Elephant Pass southern defence lines collapse -LTTE
[TamilNet, Tuesday, 21 December 1999, 11:39 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers have begun a concerted artillery attack today on the Sri Lanka Army's (SLA) central base camp at the Elephant Pass after overrunning two more military bases in the area between Paranthan and Elephant Pass, the LTTE said in statement today.
The text of the statement follows:
"The well-fortified defences around the southern sector of Elephant Pass military complex have crumbled following the fall of two more military bases to the LTTE in the area between Paranthan and Elephant Pass.
"The Paranthan chemical factory base, which housed the 546 Brigade headquarters and the Kurakkan Kadukulam army camp were brought under the control of the Tamil Tiger fighters after fierce fighting that lasted for several hours yesterday.
"The stiff resistance of the Sri Lankan troops collapsed as the LTTE fighting units mounted heavy barrage of artillery and mortar bombardment. When the military buildings collapsed due to the intensity of the shelling, the Sri Lankan troops fled to Elephant Pass central base in total disarray.
"With the fall of these two bases, the entire Paranthan region, which constituted the southern defence perimeter of the Elephant Pass base complex, has been brought under the control of the LTTE.
"Having overrun the naval supply bases and army camps that formed the defence structures of the north-eastern and southern flanks of the massive Elephant Pass base complex, the LTTE fighting units have begun a concerted artillery attack today on the central base camp which houses the military headquarters of the Sri Lankan army's 54 Division."