Tamil Tiger rebels are believed to have been behind the assassination of Sri Lanka’s housing minister, just outside the capital, Colombo. D.M. Dassanayake was traveling in a car which was hit by a roadside bomb. He was still alive when he reached hospital but he died on the operating table. Ten other people were also wounded in the attack. The Tamil Tigers have been fighting for a separate state in the north and east of the country for three decades.
A fragile ceasefire fell apart two years ago with the election of the new president, but it was only formally ended last week after an attack on a bus full of wounded female soldiers. Today’s blast came minutes before the Sri Lankan prime minister announced the extension of the state of emergency.