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DateLine Sunday, 11 May 2008





Marriage Proposals
Government Gazette

Never forget this day in your life time

President Mahinda Rajapaksa inspects the recovered armaments during the Vakarai Liberation operation

The commandos after the Thoppigala victory

Police elite force personnel in Kanchikudichchiaru jungles

The Mavil Aru anicut

The much acclaimed Eastern Provincial Council election and the reintroduction of democracy, is welcome news for the entire country. Political rallies and their decorations were a common sight in the East for the past few weeks. Many with various views on holding the Provincial Council elections. Yet, after the liberation of the Eastern Province from Tiger stronghold, people started to smell a fresh fragrance in the wind.

If the Eastern Province was not liberated from the clutches of the LTTE but allowed to remain under the power of the gun and terrorism, restoration of discipline, development and democracy would have been just another dream for Sri Lanka.

The innocent people would never had the slightest hope for a peaceful future. Now they are armed with the right to elect their representatives unlike in the gloomy past - the era of LTTE’s omnipotent ruling. If not for the heart and will of our soldiers we will not enjoy our lives to the utmost.

We are in clean shoes while his get dirty and muddy, being in the jungles and mud puddles in the Forward Defence Lines. Yes, it is true he is doing his job. Yet, for taking up such a job, loaded with risks and totally devoted to protect others, it’s worth highly valuing the courage to take such a decision and continue the rough line of conduct.

Starting from 20 July 2006 in Mavil Aru till capturing the Thoppigala (Baron’s cap) area with the LTTE’s ‘Thora Bora’ base by 11 July 2007, Sri Lankan security forces’ determination to liberate the East never died.

The undying history

True patriots never forget the people who paved the path towards a free living at the cost of their blood, toil and sweat. Yet, let us take a glimpse at the history, though it is not faraway but for the fear of it getting further away from our memories.

Since 20th July 2006, when the LTTE closed the Mavil Aru sluice gates making 15,000 acres of paddy fields into bare lands and 30,000 farmers helpless, the Government decided that ‘enough is enough’. People were suffering, the whole North and East were intensely suffering from the iron clutches of the Tigers, not to mention the fear and anxiety the rest of the country was undergoing.

In this backdrop, within six days the Sri Lankan Army decided to launch the humanitarian operation to recapture the Mavil Aru annicut in order to make the people and the area free from terror threats. In less than two weeks Army succeeded in reopening the sluice gates and chasing away the terrorists from the vicinity.

The security forces did not stop their operation to liberate the East - a precious part of our motherland forcibly held by the Tigers. From Mavil Aru security forces headed towards Trincomalee south, i.e. Muttur and Sampoor.

While the troops were getting close to the Mavil Aru annicut Tigers intensified their attacks on civilian settlements in and around Muttur area. Hence, while concentrating on recapturing the Mavil Aru the troops had to liberate Muttur as well. For the well trained and disciplined soldiers this was no challenge. Muttur was accordingly liberated.

Thousands of people were displaced since they left their homes taking a handful of assets in fear of LTTE offensives. After liberating the area the Government along with the security forces started resettling people in their original homelands.

According to statistics available 37,000 people are resettled. After the liberation, people started returning to their homes and at the moment not a single camp for Internally Displaced is in existence.

Since early September 2006, Tigers were threatening the strategically important places and civilian settlements located North of Trincomalee bay by firing mortars and artillery and continued to hold the Sampoor area in the South of Trincomalee bay. The Trincomalee town and its inhabitants were in danger. At first, the Security Forces retaliated using Artillery fire power but the Tigers continued their offensives.

Hence, the forces were compelled to launch an operation to liberate the Sampoor area in order to ensure the security of the commercially, militarily and strategically important places.

The biggest risk the forces faced was that LTTE was using innocent civilians of Sampoor area as a shield. But the troops reached well fortified LTTE targets compelling the terrorists to withdraw from the area.

During this operation that started in August 28, 2006 and continued till September 04, troops killed more than hundred LTTE cadres whereas only 24 soldiers sacrificed their lives for the sake of the country.

In the Muttur operation 152 LTTE cadres were killed in action, while six of our brave soldiers died.

Following the victory, the troops had to launch another nine day operation starting from 01st October, to free the Manirasakulam general area in the West of Muttur.

From 01st October itself, the humanitarian operation to liberate Vakarai started and lasted till mid January 2007. Terrorists started attacking Army detachments in Mankerni and Kadjuwatta, located south of Vakarai, placing their artillery and mortar fire positions against civilian settlements in Vakarai and Kadiraweli areas. The LTTE was making a worldwide propaganda accusing the Sri Lankan security forces for attacking civilian settlements.

Due to the incessant harassments meted out by the Tigers in uncleared areas civilians, in large numbers, moved to Government-controlled areas. Army launched a humanitarian operation to liberate the unfortunate victims of the Tiger ruthlessness. On the 9th November, LTTE cadres fired at a group of innocent civilians who were escaping for safety.

During this operation, LTTE suffered a heavy loss including some of their senior cadres. On November 11 the Navy handed over the body of Arivu Charles to the International Red Cross. Arivu was the deputy leader of the LTTE in the Vakarai area. In an another incident, an LTTE area leader, Vidugan Master was killed.

During the entire operation almost 700 LTTE cadres were killed and a large number was injured.

A large stock of weapons was recovered from the area during the operation and afterwards.

It included a number of heavy weapons like 120 mortar guns.

Simultaneously the Police elite forces were carrying on another operation in the Kanjikudichcharu jungles in Ampara district. During a month long operation to eradicate terrorism from these areas, the Police Special Task Force captured a number of LTTE strongholds.

STF officers captured the Stanley base on 08th January 2007 and three days later destroyed another LTTE camp named ‘Janak’. Another two LTTE strongholds Nalini base and Camp No. 02 came under the STF. By mid January 2007, many of the Tiger bases in this jungle were captured by the STF and in early February an LTTE camp called ‘Jeewanandan’ came under STF control.

Due to this execessive pressure from the Police elite forces, Tiger cadres in the jungle were forced to retreat in all directions. This capture blocked the hidden supply routes of the LTTE towards Vakarai and its vicinity from the Thoppigala area, the Tiger stronghold in the Eastern theatre.

During the month of March and early April the army succeeded in getting control of Batticaloa West covering Wellawali, Kovilporativu, Periyaporativu, Vavunativu, Kokkadicholai, Illuppadichenai, Unnichchi, Rugam, Karadiyanaru.

At present Batticaloa is under civil administration and has become a focal point for the present Provincial Council elections.

Since the beginning of 2007, the Sri Lanka Navy intensified their patrolling in the seas. As a result arms and ammunition supplies to the LTTE were largely hampered.

The Navy blocked almost all the international supply routes while the Army, the Airforce and the Police elite forces were blocking the internal supply routes putting the Tigers at a total chaos.The Navy was able to destroy several ships that were supplying arms and ammunition to the LTTE.

The presence of heavy weapons, ammunition as well as missiles in all the destroyed ships was proved during the search and clear operations.

If these stocks reached the Tigers it would have given them immense capabilities to destroy our forces. Sri Lanka Navy was on vigilance round the clock.

In addition transporting Army battalions to and from required locations was carried out by the Navy successfully. The intense situation arose when the Security Forces launched their operation to clear Thoppigala which was the main LTTE bastion in the east.

This operation that lasted since April 25 till July 11, 2007 cleared Thoppigala, Pankunaweli, Narakamulla, Galkanda, Lindagala, Tharavi, Kotiyagala areas.

The Sri Lankan Air Force continuously bombed identified LTTE locations within the area. As a result the strength of the LTTE started deteriorating rapidly. Loads of weapons, ammunition, vehicles and accessories were found during the fighting and the subsequent search and clear operations.

Being attacked from all three fronts, the LTTE had no option but to flee away from the area mainly towards North and the South. The history never repeated in the East. After the liberation, the LTTE was not in a position to carry out attacks hampering the development drive in the East.

Currently, troops are moving away from the area letting the civil administration to resume its operations.

It was the soldier, be it the Army, the Navy, the Airforce, the Police and STF who sacrificed their lives to pave the path and bring in normalcy to the entire Eastern theatre.

It is our bounden duty to hold in esteem the supreme sacrifices our forces made for the sake of our motherland.

Let democracy flourish on this fresh land and make it truly the land of the rising sun! Let us not forget the past because history is what brought us to present.


Gamin Gamata - Presidential Community & Welfare Service
Ceylinco Banyan Villas

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