COLOMBO, Sri Lanka -- U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, condemning the recent spate of violence in Sri Lanka, has asked the various stakeholders to return to the peace process.
The United Nations leader was reacting to twin bomb attacks Wednesday in and around Colombo in which at least 19 died, and other incidents earlier.
Ban "appeals for an end to the destructive spiral of violence in Sri Lanka and calls on the parties to the conflict to return to the peace process," a U.N. news release said, quoting a spokesman.
The peace process refers to a ceasefire in 2002 arranged by Norway between the Sri Lankan government and the Tamil Tigers, who are demanding a separate home for the minority Tamils on the Indian Ocean island nation. The process broke down in 2005, resulting in renewed fighting.
In recent weeks, the rebels have suffered heavy casualties in attacks by government security forces.
An explosion Wednesday at a shopping complex in Colombo killed 17 people and injured several more. A separate suicide bombing killed two people.
On Tuesday, the Tamil Tigers claimed several children in a school bus died in the far north in a mine attack the by military, which denied it.
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