Roadside Bomb Kills Sri Lankan Minister

Tamil separatists accused as ceasefire unravels
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 8, 2008 6:23 AM CST
Sri Lankan government soldiers arrive at the site of an explosion in Ja-Ela, a suburb of capital Colombo, Sri Lanka, Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2008. A Sri Lankan government minister was killed Tuesday in a roadside...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – A minister in the Sri Lankan government was killed today when a roadside bomb struck his convoy in a suburb of Colombo. Police have accused the separatist Tamil Tigers of carrying out the attack, which would represent an escalation of violence in the longstanding civil war between the two sides. Last week the government announced it was walking away from a six-year-old truce.

Although a Norwegian-led peace effort to reconcile the Sinhalese-led government and the minority Tamil separatists was brokered in 2002, that truce was largely cosmetic: the two sides have been fighting again for the past two years. The Tamil Tigers, who have fought the government since 1983, allege decades of discrimination by the Sinhalese.