The army has not been able to obtain as many volunteers for the army, even with a 55 percent pay increase. The army wanted to attract 4,000 new recruits in August, but only got 3,200 (of which only 2,500 were acceptable.) Current army strength is about 150,000, although some 56,000 deserters were recently removed from army records, there being little hope of ever getting those men back.
The rebels still refuse to resume peace negotiations, demanding that the government allow Tamil areas to become an independent Tamil nation. But the majority Sinhalese refuse to partition the