Asia Crisis

FACTBOX-Slain Sri Lanka Tiger was public face of rebels

LONDON, Nov 2 (Reuters) - S.P. Thamilselvan, leader of Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger rebels' political wing, was killed on Friday in a government air strike.

Following are some facts about Thamilselvan and his role in the Tamil Tigers.

* Born in 1967 on Sri Lanka's northern Jaffna peninsula in what is now a government-held enclave.

* Thamilselvan joined the fledgling Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam in the 1980s. In the following decade he was wounded by an Indian peacekeeping force.

* Once a rebel military commander, he joined the political wing of the Tamil Tigers and gradually took over from Anton Balasingham as the voice of the rebels.

* Thamilselvan was seen as the public mouth-piece of the Tamil Tigers and key point of contact between the rebels and the outside world. He met foreign diplomats and reporters, and led a delegation to peace talks in Geneva last year.