Commanders celebrate A-9 victory
The national flag fluttered in the breeze in the open terrain of
Elephant Pass yesterday as the Security Forces Commanders of Jaffna and
Wanni shook hands in the centre of Elephant Pass to mark the historic
moment of opening the Jaffna-Kandy A-9 Road with the capture of Elephant
Jaffna Security Forces Commander Major General Mendaka Samarasinghe
and his Wanni compatriot Major General Jagath Jayasuriya took part in
this function which was organised to mark the historic victory and the
liberation of the entire A-9 Road to Jaffna.
Brigadier Shavendra Silva who commanded the 58 Division which
captured the Elephant Pass south and Brigadiers Kamal Gunaratne and
Prasanna Silva who commanded the 53 Division and 55 Division
respectively the north approaching from Muhamalai side embraced one
another as the troops from either side exchanged national flags to mark
The Commanders walked along the narrow causeway and raised the flags
of the 58 Division, 53 Division and the 55 Division as the national flag
and the Army flag fluttered in the air.
Troops from the either side hugged one another as it was the first
time they had met one another, across this narrow stretch of land that
links the Jaffna peninsula with the mainland. “We are meeting at this
historic moment after 23 years when we could open the A-9 Road which
runs along Elephant Pass”, Wanni Security Forces Commander Major General
Jagath Jayasuriya said.
The midway mark of Elephant Pass demarcates the boundaries between
Jaffna Security Forces headquarters and the Wanni Security Forces
It was with the combined effort of the 58, 53 and the 55 Divisions,
troops fully liberated the Elephant Pass after nine years following the
2000 April withdrawal.
“Troops have now taken full control of the Jaffna peninsula and the
civilian population rejoices with the victory of the Security Forces”,
Jaffna Security Forces Commander Major General Mendaka Samarasinghe said
adding that there is no way for the LTTE to infiltrate into the
Soldiers from all the Divisions who contributed to this historic
victory were seen taking photographs in memory of this historic moment.
They also remembered their fellow soldier - Hasalaka Gamini who made
the supreme sacrifice to defend the Elephant Pass camp way back in 1991.