Two FACs damaged, 3 sailors killed
[TamilNet, Tuesday, 05 January 1999, 12:32 GMT]
Three Sri Lankan Navy (SLN) sailors were killed and two SLN fast attack craft (FAC) were damaged in the battle yesterday with the Sea Tigers, the naval wing of the Liberation Tigers, in the seas off the Mannar island.
The TamilNet correspondent in Mannar said that according to the SLN and Police in the island the fighting had erupted when the Navy had attempted to intercept a lone Sea Tiger boat it had detected.
The Sea Tiger boat was engaged by five SLN fast attack craft and, the Tigers unable to escape, had fired back, triggering off the mid sea battle.
The fighting, according to SLN sources in Mannar, had lasted for more than an hour.
The Sea Tiger vessel had returned after inflicting damage on two SLN Fast Attack Craft.
It is not known whether any sailors were wounded in the battle.
The casualties sustained by the Tigers are not known.
The TamilNet's Mannar correspondent said that Talaimannar and Pesalai areas were tense yesterday following the midsea fight.
04.01.99 Two Tiger boats destroyed - SLN