|SL Airforce raid LTTE nerve center - X-Ray base
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|Author:||Percy [ Sat Jan 26, 2008 7:39 am ]|
|Post subject:||SL Airforce raid LTTE nerve center - X-Ray base|
SL Airforce raid LTTE nerve center - X-Ray base
Deadly bunker busters used to inflict maximum damage
Tigers maintain radio silence, order closure of shops
The targeted terror hub was located in a thick jungle patch, north of LTTE’s “runway” in Iranamadu. The area has been long demarcated as a “high security zone” and a “no go” area for civilians, the defence Ministry said. The news of the air raid spread like wild fire in the island’s national capital and speculation persisted throughout the day that Mr. Prabakaran was seriously injured in the raid.
Thursday, 24 January 2008
@ Agencies / MCNS
SLAF fighter jets raided a strategically important LTTE base in the morning of January 23, 2008 during low diving missions conducted East of Iranamadu Tank at Kalamadukulam in Kilinochhci, at 11.15 a.m.
According to Air Force Spokesperson Wing Commander Andi Wijesoriya, the air sorties were carried out with pinpoint accuracy on information obtained through real-time air surveillance and ground reconnaissance.
The target identified as X-Ray base was located in a thick jungle patch in LTTE's claimed 'high military zone' and 'Intel' reports confirm it to be the hub of LTTE activities in Kilinochchi, the sources said.
He said according to intelligence sources the LTTE leader Prabhakaran used this location and he was in the bunker at the time of the attack. “The pilots confirmed that the target was destroyed, caused extensive damage to the Tiger leader hide out,” he said.
The SL Defence Secretary Mr. Gotabaya Rajapaksa earlier stated during a press interview following the killing of Thamilchelvan that, security forces would continue to take on the LTTE leadership as their whereabouts were no secret to the intelligence services.
Liberation Tigers Military Spokesman Irasiah Ilanthirayan Wednesday evening refuted the claims by the Sri Lanka Air Force that it had hit a location of the leader of the LTTE Velupillai Pirapaharan Wednesday morning. Stating that Colombo was spreading false propaganda, Ilanthirayan said the SLAF attack targeted civilian settlements at Vaddakkachchi twice between 11:10 a.m. and 11:35 a.m. and in the evening between 5:15 and 6:00 p.m.
However unconfirmed reports revealed that after the reported bomb attack, shops in Kilinochchi districts were closed down and even satellite phones used by the middle level LTTE leaders were retrieved by the intelligence officers of the separatist Tamil outfit.
"The bunker has been reduced to dust," he claimed, "several LTTE leaders may have bee killed" a high ranking military officer told. He said that deadly bunker busters weighing about 1,000 kg each had been used as the SLAF ‘didn’t want to leave anything to chance’.
Military Intelligence had been watching the LTTE leader’s movements in the Wanni during the last few days. They had reported their findings about his presence in this hideout to the SLAF.
The Defence Ministry said in a communique that the air raid had been timed for a "special" activity that was going on at the LTTE base. However, sources refrained from commenting further on the issue. They said the targeted ‘terror hub’ was located in a thick jungle patch, North of the LTTE's runway in Iranamadu. The area has been long demarcated as a ‘high security zone’ out of bounds for civilians.
On November 26, it was reported that Prabhakaran had received minor injuries in an attack by the SLAF but the LTTE website denied the story. The LTTE leadership was furious that a number of its top leaders, as well as second level local leaders, were also targeted in the combined operations by the armed forces in the recent months. In retaliation they have started attacking civilians in the deep south and other parts of the island.
The news of attack on LTTE supremo V Prabhakaran's base in rebel-held Wanni has brought cheers to the Colombo Stock Exchange index, which rose 65 points on Wednesday. "There was a major jump once word of the air strike filtered into the market and at one point, the All Share Price Index had gained over 80 points," Prashan Fernando of DFCC Stockbrokers said here, adding that the index settled lower at close of trading.
The X-ray base which is believed to be a location at which the LTTE runs a small hospital to treat injured Tiger leaders has been frequently visited by the Tiger leader for treatments. The SLAF fighter jets with receipt of intelligence reports bombed the location which contains a couple of underground bunkers at 11.15 a.m. on Wednesday.
The SLAF pilots observed that the target was hit with 100 per cent accuracy though there was no feedback from the LTTE except for a denial of such an incident by LTTE military spokesman Rasiah Ilanthirayan.
However, intelligence reports also indicated that though the Tiger leader had not sustained any injuries something serious had happened after the bombing of the location which was unknown even to lower ranking Tiger cadres.
According to intelligence reports a convoy of vehicles had arrived there on Tuesday night but there was no confirmation whether it was Prabhakaran or any other senior leader.
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