Article published on the 2009-05-20 Latest update 2009-05-20 11:35 TU
Five fighters from the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) were killed when they tried to ambush soldiers in the eastern district of Batticaloa, according to the army. They were 130 kilometres south-east of where the Tigers made their last stand at the weekend. Three other Tigers were shot dead in the neighbouring district of Ampara, the army says.
The body of LTTE chief Vellupillai Prabhakaran is carried on a stretcher by Sri Lankan soldiers at Nanthikadal lagoon, near tMullaittivu
UN Chief Ban Ki-Moon announced on Tuesday that he will visit Sri Lanka on Friday and Saturday, adding that allegations of war crimes "should be properly investigated".
Saying that he is "deeply troubled by the loss of the civilian lives", Ban declared that he wanted to see swift progress on humanitarian aid, reconstruction and sustainable political dialogue.
London-based aid group Amnesty International called on Colombo to allow "unimpeded humanitarian access" to the area where the conflict reached its conclusion. Amnesty says that refugee camps, which are housing about 280,000 civilians, are "swollen beyond their capacities" and accused the authorities of arresting three doctors who had been working in the area.
The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), which is the only neutral group that could work in the conflict zone, says that no aid has reached civilians for over a week.
"We still don’t have any information about the situation on the ground," ICRC spokesperson Sarasi Vitschnaratney told RFI. "We lost contact with our team on Sunday, and we haven’t, so far, been able to re-establish contact.
"We have made this offer to help with the evacuation of the sick wounded and any remaining civilians, and also to care for the displaced in the site, so we are waiting for a response."
The ICRC said on Tuesday that the LTTE had offered to surrender before the military's last onslaught. ICRC spokesperson Sarasi Wijeratne told The Island paper that the LTTE request had been passed to the relevant Sri Lankan authorities.
The Tigers' fall