Sri Lanka: 541 rebels killed in four months

Sri Lanka's military said it killed more than 500 separatist rebels in the past four months and lost 44 soldiers in fierce fighting that has completely shattered the island nation's peace process. The rebels disputed the casualty figures. Two more Sri Lankan troops were killed Monday morning, meanwhile, in the war-torn country's north, the military said. Military spokesman Brig. Prasad Samarasinghe said Sunday that 541 rebels have been killed in fighting in two northern districts, Mannar and Vavuniya. Both lie along the frontier separating government and rebel territory in the north and have become flashpoints in the deepening conflict.