The historical roots of Sri Lanka’s civil war

In recent weeks the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) has inflicted a series of heavy military defeats on the Sri Lankan army in the north of the island. Fierce fighting has been underway on the outskirts of the LTTE’s main strategic objective, Jaffna, Sri Lanka’s second largest city. An estimated 35,000-40,000 government forces, having lost several key bases, remain trapped, with no land route out. Lacking morale and equipment, the army is on the brink of a military disaster.

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