Colombo land mine explosion kills seven

Monday, August 14, 2006

Location of Sri Lanka
Flag of Sri Lanka

Hours after the Tamil Tigers threatened to bomb civilians in Colombo, Sri Lanka, a powerful bomb went off. The device is thought to be a fragmentation mine. Seven people were killed and seventeen injured in the explosion, and it came hours after Sri Lanka's military carried out an air-raid that killed dozens.

The blast occurred within a mile of the official home of President Mahinda Rajapakse. A convoy with the Pakistani ambassador was travelling on the road as explosion occurred, but he was unhurt.

"Definitely it's an LTTE [Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam] attack to the Pakistan ambassador's car but they missed and the backup vehicle got caught," a Sri lankan military spokesman said. The Pakistani ambassador may be a target of the Tigers as Pakistan has backed the government of Sri Lanka diplomatically.

In the past few days, there have been fierce hostilities between government forces and Tamil Tigers in the north and the east of the country.

The Tamil Tigers are a military and political group that has waged a violent secessionist campaign against Sri Lanka’s government since the 1970s. Their aim is to secure self-government for the traditional Tamil regions in the north and east of Sri Lanka.