7 Dec 2008

Sri Lanka claims capture of 100 rebel boats

10:56 am on 7 December 2008

Sri Lanka's military said on Friday it had captured more than 100 small boats used by the Tamil Tigers.

Soldiers captured the coastal village of Alampil on Thursday after heavy fighting on the east coast.

Alampil is about 10km south of Mullaitivu, a port controlled by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam.

The Tigers have been fighting for a separate Tamil state since 1983. About 70,000 people are believed to have died in the conflict since then.

The government claims to be nearing victory in the war and its soldiers have taken a number of important villages and towns in the north in recent months.