COLOMBO, Jan. 24, Reuter: Sri Lankan police killed five members of an outlawed leftist group on Sunday in a clash in the southern jungles, military officials said.

Military officials from Hamban-tota district said by telephone that 150 policemen and members of an elite anti-insurgency command ringed a patch of jungle after a tip from the public.

Some members of the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (People’s Liberation Front) resisted the advancing security force and police killed five of them.

Other front members might have escaped, officials said. Seyeral said. Several rifles, shotguns, grenades and other arms were recovered from the area.

The Front, a banned political group mostly made up of youths from the majority Sinhalese community, is opposed to an Indian Sri Lankan pact aimed at ending the four-year-old Tamil rebellion in the north and east.

The JVP is campaigning for the withdrawal of the 37,200 Indian soldiers posted in those two areas to supervise the implementation of the accord.

In the northern district of Vavuniya, residents said tension prevailed in the town after five Indian soldiers barged into a Buddhist temple on Saturday evening.

Article extracted from this publication >> January 29, 1988