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The World : Sri Lanka Radicals Kill 18

August 04, 1989

Sinhalese radicals shot and killed 18 people, including a high-ranking Buddhist priest, in a series of attacks in southern Sri Lanka, officials said. Gunmen from the People's Liberation Front stormed a Buddhist temple in Colombo, the capital, and killed the Rev. Kotikawatte Saddhatissa Thera, who had endorsed an offer by President Ranasinghe Premadasa to negotiate with the Sinhalese radical group. The other killings included nine people slain by Sinhalese gunmen at the home of United National Party legislator P. D. Abeyaratna, who was not at home. The nation's Sinhalese majority feel Premadasa has made too many concessions to Tamil rebels seeking autonomy. The bloodshed came as India and Sri Lanka held talks for a sixth day on a timetable for withdrawing Indian peacekeeping troops.

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