LTTE sea-borne attack foiled, 18 rebels killed: Sri LankaApril 4th, 2009 - 1:55 pm ICT by IANS
Colombo, April 4 (IANS) A major sea-borne attack by the Tamil Tiger rebels has been foiled after the navy confronted a cluster of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) boats, killing 18 rebels onboard off the northeastern coast of Mullaitivu, defence sources said here Saturday.
According to the sources, the pre-dawn sea battle broke out when the navy’s Special Boat Squadron (SBS) engaged a flotilla of 10 LTTE boats, which included three explosives-packed suicide boats, heading towards Alampil and Nayaru areas.
“During the sea battle two LTTE boats were destroyed and one more was damaged. The navy conducting the search operation in the area have already recovered at least 11 bodies of the LTTE cadres killed in the pre-dawn clash,” a defence official attached to the Media Centre for National Security told IANS Saturday.
He added that two naval sailors were wounded and three naval boats sustained minor damages in the battle that broke out around 1.30 a.m. and lasted for several hours.
The official said that in a separate incident a couple of hours later in the same area, army troops manning the forward defence along the northeastern coastal belt have sunk two other LTTE boats.
“The troops have recovered seven bodies after this incident. Intercepted LTTE communications have revealed that the enemy has suffered heavy casualties,” the defence official said.
There was no immediate reaction from the LTTE that has been fighting to carve out a separate state in the island’s northeastern provinces over the past quarter century.
Sri Lanka, confident of completely defeating the LTTE militarily, claimed last week that its troops have cornered LTTE into a mere 21-sq km stretch of land, of which 20 sq km are no-fire-zone declared for thousands of civilians trapped in the area.
According to official statistics, the number of civilians fleeing the rebel-held areas defying LTTE orders was on the rise and over 62,000 internally displaced people (IDPs) have already entered the government-held areas since the beginning of 2009.
These IDPs are temporarily housed in welfare centres and villages in the northern Vavuniya, Mannar and Jaffna districts.
- 45 killed as Sri Lankan military battles LTTE (Lead) - Mar 30, 2009
- 27 killed in sea clash with LTTE: Sri Lankan military - Mar 30, 2009
- 49 Tamil Tigers killed in Sri Lanka (Lead) - May 09, 2009
- Two Sea Tiger boats destroyed in naval battle: Sri Lanka - Nov 18, 2008
- 23 Sea Tigers killed as Sri Lankan Navy foils suicide attack (Lead) - May 01, 2009
- 96 Tamil Tigers killed in Sri Lanka: Military (Lead) - Apr 04, 2009
- Four LTTE boats destroyed, navy craft damaged in major clash: Lanka - Jan 20, 2009
- Heavy fighting as Sri Lanka troops approach Sea Tiger bastion - Dec 04, 2008
- Sri Lankan troops foil LTTE infiltration bid - Mar 05, 2009
- LTTE boat destroyed, four Sea Tigers killed: Sri Lankan Navy - Dec 28, 2008
- Two LTTE leaders surrender, over 95,000 flee war zone (Second Lead) - Apr 22, 2009
- Senior Sea Tiger leader killed in heavy fighting - Mar 21, 2009
- 14 Sea Tigers killed: Sri Lankan Navy - Nov 01, 2008
- Navy sinks two LTTE boats, kills six cadres: Sri Lanka - Feb 08, 2009
- LTTE suicide-boat attack damages one ship off Jaffna coast (Second Lead) - Oct 22, 2008
Tags: army troops, coastal belt, defence sources, flotilla, forward defence, liberation tigers of tamil eelam, liberation tigers of tamil eelam ltte, major sea, minor damages, northeastern coast, northeastern provinces, official statistics, pre dawn, quarter century, sailors, sea battle, search operation, special boat squadron, sri lanka colombo, tamil tiger rebels