New Delhi, India Six soldiers were killed in a landmine explosion, and eight Tamil Rebels were shot dead by security forces in troubled Sri Lanka, United News of India reported Sunday.

Quoting official reports from the capital Colombo, UNI said six soldiers were killed and seven wounded when Tamil separatist guerrillas blasted their convoy Saturday with a land mine in the northern Mullaitivu district.

Earlier, two police commandos were wounded in a land mine attack in the eastern Batticaloa district, the report said.

Following that ambush, commandos killed eight suspected rebels in the area, UNI said.

Guerrillas attacked the WellaVali police station in Batticaloa district Sunday, the news agency said. The station was damaged, but there were no casualties reported.

At least 115 people have been killed in Sri Lanka this month in violence involving rebels, security forces and civilians.

The mostly Hindu Tamils, who comprise about 18 percent of the nation’s 15 million people, allege they are discriminated against by the Buddhist Sinhalese majority. The guerrillas are seeking a separate homeland in the northern and eastern regions.

Sri Lankan President Junius R. Jayewardene was quoted Sunday as saying a military solution to the insurgency was “feasible but not desirable.”

In an interview published in The Island Newspaper of Colombo, he said the rebels could be “controlled” in about a year but it might take “a few years” to completely defeat them.

Article extracted from this publication >>  November 29, 1985