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TAMILS HEAT UP ATTACK ON TRAPPED TROOPS

Tamil separatist guerrillas besieging a military base in a 300-year-old fort in northern Jaffna town have intensified attacks on troops trapped inside, military sources said Saturday.

They said Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam made a strong assault Friday night with mortar bombs and rocket-propelled grenades.The 240 soldiers and 60 police inside fought back with small arms, artillery and mortar bombs, the sources said.

The fort, built by Dutch colonialists, has been under siege for nine days and the sources said its occupants were running out of food.