Tigers, SLA brace for more

[TamilNet, Friday, 31 March 2000, 17:34 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers consolidated areas they captured on the peninsula's southeastern coast this week and the Sri Lankan army re-deployed troops from Maathagal and Varani to strengthen its defences in Thenmaradchi against the Unceasing Waves III offensive. The SLA, meanwhile, banned fishing again in the seas off the Vadamaradchi coast.

The ban on fishing will affect thousands of fishermen and people in related trades in numerous coastal villages - from Katkovalam near Pt.Pedro to Thondamanar, a spokesman for a local society said this evening.

The intensity of the fighting generally eased by this afternoon in some parts of the peninsula's Thenmaradchi division and Vadamaradchi east which were the scenes of intense battles since Sunday (March 26) night.

The SLA pulled out a section of its positions in Maathagal on the northwestern coast of the Jaffna peninsula today. The old coastal village of Maathagal was captured by the army in 1992. It has remained an extension of the Palaly - Kankesanthurai - base complex since then.

Civilians whose belongings had been taken by the SLA for its use in the evacuated section of the Mathagal base went inside the area today to look for their things, the Tamilnet's Jaffna correspondent said.

According to an unconfirmed report from Vadamaradchi east, the SLA at the Vairavar Kovilady on the road from Thalaiyadi to Puthukkaadu junction on the A9 had pulled back to Vidangutheevu following an LTTE attack last night.

Vidangutheevu is further to the west from Vairavar Kovilady on the Thalaiyadi- Puthukkaadu road.


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