Bus attack kills 25 as Sri Lankan cease-fire officially ends

A bomb and shooting attack blamed on Tamil separatists ripped through a packed civilian bus Wednesday, killing 25 people in southeastern Sri Lanka as the government officially withdrew from a tattered cease-fire with the rebels. Military spokesman Brig. Udaya Nanayakkara said it was clear the rebels - accused of killing two more people as they retreated into the bush - were behind the assault, the latest in a string of recent attacks in government-held territory. "There are no other groups operating in the area," he said. Spokesmen for the rebels could not immediately be reached for comment. But the group, listed as a terror organization by the US and European Union, routinely denies responsibility for such attacks. If the Tamil Tigers are responsible, it highlights their increasing determination to hit targets in the generally peaceful south as the military presses ahead with an offensive against rebel-held territory in the north.