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 Post subject: Gotabhaya Rajapakse escapes suicide attack
 Post Posted: Sat Dec 02, 2006 5:55 am 
Sri Lanka defense secretary escapes suicide attack
Three dead, 14 wounded

01DEC2006

A suicide bomber targeted a convoy of vehicles carrying Sri Lanka's defence secretary Gotabhaya Rajapakse, younger brother of President Mahinda Rajapaksa, in the capital Friday, killing himself, two soldiers and wounding 14 others, the military said.

@ DM /02DEC2006

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Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa - younger brother of President Mahinda Rajapaksa and known to be one of the most powerful men in the administration - miraculously escaped unhurt when an LTTE suicde bomber attacked his convoy at Kollupitiya yesterday.

Pandemonium reigned as bodyguards who rescued the defence secretary from his bullet proof BMW, then rushed him to Temple Trees in a defender jeep while firing in the air to clear the way. The firing sent shock waves around the country amidst reports that a gun battle had erupted between security forces and LTTE cadres.

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Half an hour later national television showed the defence secretary being hugged by the President at Temple Trees. Some blood was seen on the shirt of the smiling defence secretary.

The attack was carried out by a male suicide bomber riding a three wheeler, at 10.40 am, at the Sir James Peiris Mawatha - Anagarika Dharmapala Mawatha junction. Though Mr. Rajapaksa escaped, two soldiers were killed and 18 including security forces personnel and civilians injured.

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Gothabaya Rajapaksa was on his way to attend a National Security Council meeting at Temple Trees when his convoy came under attack.

The suicide bomber driving a red three wheeler bearing the number WP-GH 0617 apparently failed to ram into the bullet proof BMW of the Defence Secretary, due to heavy traffic at the intersection.

Unable to manoeuver the explosives laden three-wheeler towards the BMW, he detonated himself a few metres away from the Defence Secretary’s car, between two civilian vehicles, causing a Defender jeep providing security to Mr. Rajapaksa to crash into his vehicle.

The three wheeler suspected to have been used by the suicide bomber to target the Defence Secretary was registered under the name Antonio Bernard Christopher of Kadawata. The impact of the blast flung a pilot trailer bike carrying two Special Forces personnel twenty metres away, causing damage to eight civilian vehicles, including two passenger buses in the vicinity, while some vehicles burst into flames.

The windscreen, bonnet, headlights and tyres of Mr. Rajapaksa’s vehicle were damaged by shrapnel. However the Defence Secretary, seated in the backseat, miraculously escaped unhurt.

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The headless body of the suicide bomber was discovered in the rear of a nearby double cab. Parts of the three-wheeler were flung about twenty meters away from the blast.

Kollupitiya police Inspector Mahesh Perera said they had recovered the bomber’s mobile phone.

The CID had questioned 20 eyewitnesses, and the Government Analysts department was determining the type of explosive used in the attack he said. IGP Victor Perera also visited the scene.

Soon after the blast, Mr. Rajapaksa’s personal Security helped him out of his vehicle, and rushed him to Temple Trees in a convoy Defender, firing into the air. The firing caused much panic amongst the people, who thought a gun battle had erupted between the army and LTTE in the heart of Colombo.

The situation also caused parents to rush to nearby schools and take their children home.

Fire department trucks immediately rushed to the scene to put out the flames enveloping the vehicles caught in the blast.

Twenty-seven year old bus driver I.S Weerasekera, who operates on the 112 Kotahena-Maharagama route, said his bus had been stopped at the traffic lights by the Special Forces to make way for the Defence Secretary’s convoy when he suddenly heard a big bang and saw flames.

“Suddenly I heard a huge blast and soon after saw clouds of smoke followed by blazes rising from under the mango tree. Then a bike in flames came hurling towards the bus. I ducked to avoid being hit, and the windscreen was shattered”, he added.


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 Post Posted: Mon Dec 04, 2006 3:50 am 
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Joined: Mon Sep 04, 2006 7:42 am
Posts: 22
Its time to finish this catastrophe. What more do you want. Army Commander was hit and now the Defense secretary. We should ask the Norway to buzz off from our country now and start the real reply to terrorism. You can’t defeat terrorism by butter talk. You need real action. As you can see LTTE doesn’t have prabakaran as their leader. You can see from their hero’s day speech. Praba has gone. Washed away by Tsunami. Thank god for that. Now we should give our utmost support our defense forces and the president to bring peace harmony and prosperity to our motherland.


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