A fresh wave of killings gripped Sri Lanka's embattled northeast with 19 people shot dead in separate incidents, police and military officials said on Monday.
The violence came as Tamil Tiger rebels vowed a 'war' to deploy their navy even though truce monitors said the move will be a violation of ceasefire.
Sri Lanka's President Mahinda Rajapakse warned the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam not to take his patience for weakness and said his policy of air strikes was aimed at preventing a full-scale war.
Unidentified gunmen attacked the home of a local resident in Kayts in the Jaffna peninsula and shot dead nine people, including four children and wounded two more, the military said.
Three more civilians were gunned down in a separate incident in Kayts.
In a third incident in the Kayts islet, another man was shot dead, police said, adding two men were shot dead at Atchchuveli while a soldier was killed in a Tiger grenade attack at Kopay.
Troops retaliated killing one of the attackers and raised to 17 the number of people killed in Jaffna peninsula in a 24-hour period.
A breakaway faction of Tamil Tigers shot two more people dead in the restive northeastern port district of Trincomalee, police said.