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DATE=11/2/1999 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT TITLE=SRI LANKA KILLING (L-ONLY) NUMBER=2-255724 BYLINE=VANDANA CHOPRA DATELINE=COLOMBO CONTENT= VOICED AT: INTRO: A Sri Lankan Tamil lawmaker was shot to death today in a suburb of the Capital, Colombo. And as Vandana Chopra reports, two days of heavy fighting in the north of the country has killed more than 60 Tamil tiger rebels and government soldiers. TEXT: Police officials say the lawmaker, from a minority Tamil party, and his driver, were shot dead in their car by an unidentified gunman. The legislator, Athputharajah Nadarajah, represented the Eelam People's Democratic Party or EPDP, a former Tamil rebel group, that has nine seats in the 225 member Sri Lankan parliament. Mr. Nadarajah was also the editor-in-chief of a popular Tamil language newspaper, which has been critical of other minority Tamil political parties. Party officials have not yet blamed anyone for the killing. In the past tiger rebels have targetted EPDP members who they accuse of not supporting their cause for an independent homeland in Sri Lanka's north and east. The leader of EPDP, Douglas Devananda, has also been attacked by the rebels in the past. Meanwhile, the defense ministry says more than 60 soldiers and rebels were killed in a limited operation in the Northern jungle region, Wanni. The defense ministry statement says aircraft and helicopter gunships attacked rebel positions causing heavy casualties. There has been no reaction from tiger separatists on the latest round of fighting. Fighting in the North and East and surprise attacks by Tiger rebels have increased in the last few months. Tiger separatists have been fighting for a separate homeland for the minority Tamil community in Sri Lanka's North and East since 1983.(Signed) NEB/VC/PLM INTRO: TEXT: NEB/WTW/ 02-Nov-1999 05:55 AM EDT (02-Nov-1999 1055 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .





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