COLOMBO, SRI LANKA, OCT. 9 -- Indian soldiers raided more than a dozen Tamil guerrilla camps and arrested nearly 100 rebels in northern and eastern Sri Lanka, military sources said today.
Sri Lankan military officials said the troops, ordered to shoot armed guerrillas on sight, encountered resistance in raids against at least 15 camps in a crackdown to stem a wave of rebel violence that has taken at least 180 lives in three days.
Two of the camps, they said, belonged to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, the most powerful separatist group, which repudiated a cease-fire after 13 of its members committed suicide in government custody on Monday.
In New Delhi, a government spokesman said at least 98 militants were arrested and that peace-keeping troops fought gun battles with Tamil rebels during their sweeps.
In Colombo, the capital, Sri Lankan President Junius Jayewardene and Indian Defense Minister K.C. Pant discussed strategy in efforts to restore order on the Indian Ocean island.
India and Sri Lanka signed a peace pact on July 29 to end a four-year-old Tamil separatist revolt. "If this accord fails, this country will get back to terrorism on a much bigger scale than before. It will be the end of democracy," Jayewardene said.