LTTE leader Prabhakaran, son and five other leaders deadMay 18th, 2009 - 4:12 pm ICT by John Le Fevre
The Sri Lankan government has confirmed that Velupillai Prabhakaran, the 54-year-old leader of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), or Tamil Tigers as they are more commonly termed, is dead.
According to government sources Prabhakaran, who lead the LTTE for it’s entire 33 years, was shot dead while trying to flee the war zone in an ambulance before dawn.
The Sri Lankan army also confirmed the death of four leading LTTE cadre, including Prabhakaran’s eldest son, Charles Anthony.
A large explosion in a bunker yesterday prompted speculation that Prabhakaran and other senior commanders may have killed themselves in keeping with the LTTE tradition of suicide.
During previous rounds of fighting, Prabhakaran had reportedly told his bodyguards to kill him and burn his body beyond recognition rather than allow his capture.
The Sri Lankan army is currently completing mopping up operations, with the last remnants of the once feared LTTE fighting from bunkers in an area about the size of three football pitches placed side by side.
The defense ministry said special forces found the bodies of the rebels’ political wing leader, Balasingham Nadesan, the head of the rebels’ peace secretariat, Seevaratnam Puleedevan, and one of the top military leaders, known as Ramesh.
Also reportedly found dead were the LTTE’s police chief Ilango and its deputy intelligence chief Kapil Amman.
The defense ministry said the bodies of many more rebels were scattered about the area and were not yet identified.
The Tamil Tigers have been blamed for hundreds of suicide attacks and more than 70,000 people have been killed in the fighting over the years as the LTTE fought for a separate state for Sri Lanka’s ethnic Tamil minority after years of marginalization at the hands of the Sinhalese majority.
- Prabhakaran alive, claims pro-LTTE website - May 19, 2009
- Bodies of Prabhakaran's son, six LTTE leaders found (Third Lead) - May 18, 2009
- A candid post-mortem of the LTTE (Book Review) - Jul 16, 2012
- Sri Lanka's 26-year war ends as LTTE leader Prabhakaran killed (Intro Roundup) - May 18, 2009
- Death blow for LTTE as Prabhakaran, aides killed in Sri Lanka (Roundup) - May 18, 2009
- 3 senior LTTE leaders killed: Sri Lanka army - May 18, 2009
- Is LTTEs Prabhakaran dead or not? - May 19, 2009
- LTTE chief Prabhakaran reportedly shot dead - May 18, 2009
- Prabhakaran surrounded by government troops, claims Lankan army - May 18, 2009
- LTTE's Prabhakaran shot dead along with leading cadre - May 18, 2009
- Were LTTE leaders killed as they sought to surrender? - May 24, 2009
- Top LTTE leaders killed while trying to surrender: Report - May 24, 2009
- Prabhakaran's body found, Rajapaksa says LTTE vanquished (Roundup) - May 19, 2009
- India, LTTE met 'secretly' before Sri Lanka truce: Eric Solheim - Nov 13, 2011
- Sri Lanka declares end of war against LTTE after killing Prabhakaran - May 18, 2009
Tags: 33 years, balasingham, bodyguards, defense ministry, eldest son, government sources, kapil, large explosion, liberation tigers of tamil eelam, liberation tigers of tamil eelam ltte, marginalization, military leaders, political wing leader, sri lankan army, sri lankan government, suicide attacks, tamil minority, tamil tigers, velupillai prabhakaran, war zone