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Rebels in Sri Lanka want ceasefire

  • Story Highlights
  • Rebels said they would implement a ceasefire the government withdrew last week
  • Heavy fighting was triggered by the government's abandonment of the cease-fire
  • Truce with Tamil Tigers had collapsed since resurgence of fighting 2 years ago
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From Iqbal Athas
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COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (CNN) -- Tamil Tiger rebels said Thursday that they are ready "to implement every clause" of a ceasefire from which the government withdrew last week.

The rebel announcement comes after a week of heavy fighting triggered by the government's decision to abandon the ceasefire.

A government offensive designed to crush the rebels has led to deaths on both sides in recent days.

Rising violence also killed a government minister earlier this week -- an explosion killed D.M. Dassanayake, minister for nation building, on Tuesday.

The government blamed Tamil Tiger rebels for that attack.

A Tamil Tiger statement accused the government of abandoning a 2002 ceasefire "without any justification."

Brokered by Norway in 2002, the ceasefire has long existed in name only, as the two sides resumed fighting two years ago. E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

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