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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Amnesty: Colombo Plea

COLOMBO () -- Amnesty International has appealed to the Sri Lankan government to protect civilians as its troops prepared to resume a northern offensive to crush Tamil rebels.

The London-based human rights organization, in a report that reached Reuters on Thursday, welcomed steps taken by the government to protect people from human rights abuses, including extrajudicial executions.

But "Amnesty International is concerned about continuing reports of arbitrary arrests, torture, including rape, disappearances and extrajudicial executions being reported in the northeast," it said. The group said the arrests had begun after April 19, when the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam ended a truce with Colombo and the two sides resumed a 12-year ethnic war.