Residents find abandoned munitions
[TamilNet, Thursday, 27 August 1998, 01:10 GMT]
Residents in the Kokkadicholai area handed over to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) on Tuesday, arms and other munitions which the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) had left behind during its single day operation there on August 19, said sources in Batticaloa.
The joint SLA, Special Task Force and police operation was in the LTTE controlled area across the lagoon, west of Batticaloa.
The material handed over included two T-56 assault rifles, two sets of uniforms, five flak jackets and two boxes of ammunition containing 1,500 rounds each, said sources.
The LTTE said 5 STF troopers were killed in the fighting that erupted when the join Sri Lankan forces moved into area. The Sri Lankan military said it was a limited operation, but the Tigers say the offensive to capture Kokkadicholai was repulsed.
Residents in other area who saw the SLA troops return to barracks say they were bringing back tents and cooking utensils, fuelling speculation that the SLA had intended to take and hold Kokkadicholai.
Menawhile, Sri Lanka Air Force's Kfir jets bombed areas across the lagoon west of Batticaloa which are under the control of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) on Wednesday between 7:00 - 7:30 a.m., said informed sources in Europe.
Thandamalai, a village 25 km. west of Batticaloa and in the LTTE controlled area was among the areas bombed. No other details, including casualty figures, are known.