SLA penetratiom group strikes again in east
[TamilNet, Tuesday, 18 September 2001, 15:38 GMT]
A member of the communications wing of the Liberation Tigers was killed in a claymore blast set off by a deep penetration team of the Sri Lanka army in the hinterland west of the Batticaloa town Monday around 4.30 p.m. paramilitary sources in the eastern town said. Since June this year, SLA deep penetration teams have killed two members of the Liberation Tigers inside the western hinterland of the Batticaloa district. The LTTE controls 90 percent of the districtís western sector. The Liberation Tigers in Batticaloa say that they have recovered 37 claymore mines set up by the SLA inside areas under their control since 15 June.
Paramilitary sources in the eastern town told Tamilnet that Mano, a member of the LTTE who was in charge of the organisation's communications and video units in the Batticaloa district, was riding a motorbike alone when he was hit by a claymore mine blast at Paththarakkaddai, 4 kilometres north west of the SLAís camp in Vavunathivu Monday evening.
The SLA, however, claimed in a press release that 'Mano' was killed at Naripulthottam Tuesday. Naripulthottam is more than 6 kilometres north of Vavunathivu.
The SLA camp at Vavunathivu stands sentry to the Valaiyiravu Bridge on the edge of the western shore of the lagoon, five kilometres southwest of the Batticaloa, guarding the main entry point between the districtís hinterland and the eastern town.
The SLA's Special Forces, aided by a small band of specially trained local paramilitaries, undertake deep penetration operations into Batticaloa's western hinterland which is held by the LTTE.
The Liberation Tigers in the Batticaloa said that they have arrested three persons since June for aiding the deep penetration teams to smuggle in claymore mines.
Nizam, a senior officer of the LTTE in Batticaloa was killed by a claymore mine blast in June deep inside the hinterland held by the organisation. Another blast seriously wounded a trooper riding a motorbike at Thandiyadi, four kilometres west of the vavunathivu camp, in July. The LTTE trooper whose legs were blown off took cyanide.
The SLA deep penetration team that attacked him withdrew before the Tigers could send in reinforcements to the area, paramilitary sources working with the SLA in Batticaloa town said.
SLA deep penetration teams have targeted senior officials of the Liberation Tigers in the Vanni, including the leader of the organisation's political wing, Mr. S.P Thamil Chelvan since early this year. Mr. Thamil Chelvan was on his way for talks with a Norwegian peace delegation when his convoy was hit by a powerful claymore mine blast.
15.06.01 Claymore kills LTTE's eastern political leader
16.05.01 Thamil Chelvan's convoy hit by SLA claymore