Air Raid Kills Separatist Head in Sri Lanka

Tamil Tigers top brass dead after early- morning air strike
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 2, 2007 6:17 AM CDT
Head of political wing of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), S.P. Tamilselvan, looks on as he speaks to Associated Press in Tamil rebel held town of Kilinochchi, about 270 kilometers (169 miles)...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – An air raid has killed the de facto leader of the Tamil Tigers, the separatist group that has waged a civil war in Sri Lanka for more than twenty years. SP Thamilselvan, the head of the Tigers' political wing and the public face of the group, died this morning along with at least five senior officers, writes the Guardian.

The Sri Lankan government and the Tamil Tigers had agreed to a truce in 2002, and the 2004 tsunami that devastated the island raised hopes of a complete ceasefire. But in the past two years fighting has become a daily occurrence, with 5,000 people estimated to have died in the last year. Thamilselvan was the Tigers' liaison with peacekeepers, ceasefire monitors, and journalists.