Kaaththaankudi police arrest 17 Tamil civilians
[TamilNet, Thursday, 25 September 2008, 17:13 GMT]
Kaaththaankudi police arrested seventeen persons on suspicion in a joint cordon and search operation launched by police, Special Task Force (STF) commandos, and Sri Lanka Army (SLA) Wednesday afternoon around 4:00 p.m. in Aaraiyampathi Murukan Koayil area, in Batticaloa district, sources in Batticaloa said.
The troops and police searched all the houses in the area, subjected the residents to rigorous checking. Civilians passing by were also arrested and taken to Kaaththaankudi police, civil society sources said.
After initial interrogation only three of the arrested were released while the rest are being detained in police custody.
Meanwhile, five youths including three students from Batticaloa St.Michael's College, arrested by Kaaththaankudi police Tuesday afternoon were produced Wednesday before Batticaloa Magistrate V.Ramanakkannan. The Magistrate instructed the police to keep the youths remand until September 30.
The arrested youths were identified as S.Chandravathan, 18, S.Thivaagar, 19, of Kurukka'lmadam, P.Puspanath, 18, S.Viswanath, 17, and T.Kanchayan, 17.
Kaaththaankudi Police have charged them with offences including causing civil disturbances and planning to incite violence in the area.
However, residents say that the youths are innocent and not involved in any violent activities.