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Last updated: 04 September, 2006 - Published 13:23 GMT
 
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LTTE admits defeat in Sampoor
 
Sri Lanka troops in the east
LTTE says they have "tactically withdrawn" from Sampoor
“Sri Lankan forces are now in control of Sampoor,” Tamil Tiger military spokesman Rasiah Ilanthirayan told the BBC.

Speaking with BBC sandeshaya from LTTE stronghold Kilinochchi Ilanthirayan said that their cadres are now “tactically withdrawing” from the strategically important town.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa earlier announced capturing of the key town as he addressed the 55th annual conference of the ruling party.

"Our troops have captured Sampur," he told Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) delegates to thunderous applause.

President Rajapaksa addressing the SLFP conference
Special announcement was made at the SLFP conference

The security forces launched an operation to capture the key town on 28 August.

The troops were only acting in self-defense as the Tigers were launching artillery attacks on the troops from Sampoor, military spokesman Brigadier Prasad Samarasinghe told BBC Sandeshaya.

Ilanthirayan denied suggestions that the LTTE is facing defeat in the eastern Sri Lanka in the wake of the latest offensive by Sri Lanka security forces.

He said the LTTE is "continuously resisting" the advancement of the security forces.

 
 
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