5TH LEAD (Correction, Update, Added Photos)

175 schoolchildren, 9 staff narrowly escape air strike on school

[TamilNet, Monday, 19 March 2007, 08:36 GMT]
Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) Kfir bombers Monday morning bombed a school in Chundikulam, wounding a female teacher and two schoolboys, attending 7th grade and 9th grade at the school, Chundikulam Vidyalayam, located 21 km northeast of Kilinochchi, in the southern part of Vadamaradchi East region in Jaffna district. Three bombs were dropped 25 meters from a class room. A bomb that hit a tree exploded in the air, wounding two children and a teacher. Around 175 schoolchildren, 8 teachers and the principal of the school narrowly escaped from the aerial attack. TamilNet correspondent who visited the site of the attack witnessed a second air strike at 11:45 a.m.

Chundikulam school bomb attack
Schoolchildren and IDPs inside a bunker near the school [Photo: TamilNet]

Wounded victims admitted at Kilinochchi hospital were identified by medical sources as Kanapathipillai Nirojan, 11, attending 7th grade at Chundikulam Vidyalayam, Luxmikanthan Jegatheepan, 16, attending 9th grade. The teacher was identified as K. Sathiyavathy, 26.

Two other schools, Aliyavalai Church Ceylon Tamil Mixed School and Uduthurai Mahavidyalayam, were functioning at Chundukuli Vidyalayam that was subjected to aerial attack.

Chundikulam SLAF  attack
Kfir bombers dropped bombs on the school when the children were attending their classes Monday morning at 9:45 and later at 11:45 a.m.

There are no military installations in the area populated by IDPs.

Civilian IDPs and the villagers have fled towards shrub jungles following the attack.

chundikulam  school bomb attack
Two schools, Aliyavalai Church Ceylon Tamil Mixed School and Uduthurai Mahavidyalayam were re-located following internal displacement due to artillery shelling. The schools were functioning at temporary shelters in Chundikulam.

chundikulam school bomb attack
IDP shelters near the school.


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