Crossing cancelled as shots fired

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 28 July 1999, 16:29 GMT]
Sri Lanka Army General Lionel Balagalle the Chief of Staff and the Commander of Vanni region said today that the return home of Vanni residents stranded in Vavuniya since the closure of the access point was cancelled after shots were fired soon after the first batch had reached the area controlled by the Liberation Tigers.

"First batch of 15 civilians were sent to cross the boarder when the LTTE opened fire. Therefore the second batch of 75 people were not sent. Three people out of the fifteen are detained by the LTTE and the rest were allowed come back to the cleared area. Now all the civilians are returning to Vavuniya" he said.

The reasons for the firing were not clear, nor if the shots were warnings, as SLA officials earlier said.

Meanwhile, K.Ganesh the Government Agent in Vavuniya has informed the lodges and the hotels in which the Vanni stranded civilians were staying about their expected return and had requested all necessary arrangements be made to provide lodging and food to them.


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