SLA takes new ground

[TamilNet, Monday, 22 March 1999, 11:51 GMT]
The Sri Lankan Army (SLA) said that it has brought a section of Aandaankulam, six kilometers north of Uyilankulam junction under its control by 4 p.m. this afternoon. The Uyilankulam junction is on the Mannar-Vavuniya highway and is currently the entry point for civilians to the LTTE controlled parts of the Vanni.

Sri Lankan military sources in Mannar told the TamilNet correspondent that troops had moved through Karukkaikkulam and Adampan and had advanced on the Andaankulam School road today.

They said that troops are now in control of that section of Aanadaankulam in which the LTTE's Wardead Memorial is located.

The village of Parappukkadanthaan is contiguous with Aandaankulam and lies to the east on the road running to Madhu.

The Aandaankulam Parappukkadanthaan area is about 16 kilometers west of Madhu linked by a gravel and mud road through the jungles.

Intial reports indicated that heavy fighting had broken out between the Liberation Tigers and the SLA in the general area of Parappukkadanthaan.

Meanwhile, a civilian wounded by shrapnel from shells fired by the SLA columns that advanced towards Aandaankulam today was admitted to the Mannar base hospital this evening.

The civilian, Santhiyogu Ritaamma,40, of Adampanthaalvu in Vattankandal was brought by her husband through Uyilankulam.

Ritaamma's husband Santiyogu said that she was hit by a shell that fell in front of their house this afternoon around 1 a.m. He said that they had not seen the army in their area.

They had, however, heard heavy shelling from army positions southwest of their village.

Vattakkandal is three kilometers northeast of Uyilankulam.


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