Two civilians killed in SLA ambush
[TamilNet, Wednesday, 12 July 2000, 16:50 GMT]
Two civilians who were returning from a temple festival south west of Batticaloa Wednesday were shot dead by the Sri Lanka army. Velmurugu Charles Satkunam of Kaluwanchikudi and Ilyathamby Arumugam the 40th Colony were returning from the annual festival of the Thaanthamalai Murugan temple in the interior in the early hours of the morning today around 3.30 a.m. when they were shot dead by an SLA ambush party at Vaalakkaalai near the 39th Colony on the Ampara-Batticaloa district border sources said.
Thaanthamalai and Vaalakkaalai are situated in the western hinterland of the Batticaloa district which is under the control of the Liberation Tigers.
SLA deep penetration groups operate in the LTTE controlled areas close to the Ampara border to ambush the Tigers and gather information about their activities.
Military sources in Ampara said that the SLA ambush party may have mistaken the two men for Tigers as they were riding a motorbike while it was still dark in an LTTE controlled area.
Velmurugu Charles Satkunam was a village officer in Kaluwanchikudi, 24 kilometers south of Batticaloa.
The bodies of the two men were brought to the Kaluwanchikudi hospital this evening by their relatives.