‘High-profile LTTE hideout’ bombed: Sri Lanka


Colombo : Sri Lankan Air Force jets Friday bombed “a high-profile LTTE hideout” in northeastern Mullaitivu district where Tamil Tigers have been cornered by the advancing troops, the defence ministry said.

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It said that the Israeli-built Kfir and Chinese-built F-7 fighter jets “launched precision air strikes at a high-profile LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) hideout located one km northeast of the Puthukkudiyiruppu junction”.

“Two successive air strikes were made at a heavily fortified LTTE hideout, at around 1.45 p.m. and 4.45 p.m. respectively. The air strikes were successful,” the defence ministry said, citing aerial video footages.

It said that the LTTE communication lines had gone dead since the initial aerial attack and tension was prevailing within the inner circles of the organisation.

In a separate statement, it said that the troops of the 57 Division operating east of Vishwamadu area have taken total control of a main base complex of the LTTE’s elite “Radha Regiment”, which it said, was looking after the personal security of its elusive chief Velupillai Prabhakaran.

Quoting ground military reports, it said that the base located at Theravikkulam area, aligned to the A-35 Paranthan-Mullaitivu highway, was considered to be a main training and operational facility of the LTTE.

“The ‘Radha regiment’ is led by a senior LTTE cadre identified as Rathnam. Its main task was to provide personal security to Prabhakaran, including air defence and internal intelligence gathering,” the defence ministry said.

With the capture of Vishwamadu and Chalai, the last Sea Tiger base of the rebels, it said the security forces have now confined the LTTE to an area of less than 200 square km.

There was no word from the rebel outfit, which has been fighting for the past quarter century to carve out a separate Tamil state, regarding the latest military claims.