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Last updated: 17 May, 2009 - Published 01:17 GMT
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UN ask for 'compromise'
The Sri Lankan army said the remaining rebels were trapped in an inland area in the north-east of the island. War is not over yet, says the defence secretary. Meanwhile the UN warns about the consequences of not having a compromise.

Aid agencies have warned that thousands of civilians may also be trapped with them.

Meanwhile The UN's humanitarian envoy, John Holmes, warned of a possible guerrilla war if no compromise on Tamil autonomy is achieved.

John Holmes
John Holmes in Sri Lanka
John Holmes in Vavunia meeting the displaced

In an interview with the BBC, John Holmes warned about the difficulty of a solution. "I'm afraid it's going to be very difficult given the casualties and the violence to arrange the kind of compromise which is going to be needed on the political front for a proper autonomy for the Tamils. That's what needs to happen, otherwise whatever the military victory now we'll simply go back to a kind of guerrilla war of some kind or other and the government will have won the war but lost the peace and that's a very great danger I'm afraid".

not over yet

But the war is not over yet says the The defence secretary Gotabhaya Rajapakse.

 otherwise whatever the military victory now we'll simply go back to a kind of guerrilla war of some kind or other
John Holmes

"We have rescued all the civilians from the area, now we are searching for any more civilians. In the meantime, we have restricted the LTTE to one square kilometre-like area, so we will mop up and seize the rest of the LTTE cadres and the leadership."

Mr Rajapaksa said the army did not know exactly where to find the rebel leader Velupillai Prabhakaran, but expressed confidence that he would be tracked down soon.

Meanwhile, the military spokesperson said two senior leaders of the rebels had been killed in the conflict and that they were still looking for others.

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