Sri Lank Air Force (SLAF) warplanes bombed LTTE held Wanni heartland for the second time in two days since the CFA was officially nullified.
First of these airstrikes was carried out yesterday (16th) at around 2.30PM. The target was an LTTE weapons factory south of Puthukuduirippu. According to Military Intelligence, the factory was used to mass produce Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs). LTTE are known to invent locally made weapons variants such as the "Baba" mortar, Pasilan 2000 (improved version of Baba mortar) and customized land mines. According to Air Force sources, both the manufacturing facility and the storage building has been destroyed in the air strike.
Second air strike was carried out today (17th) on an LTTE safe house in Jayapuram, Kilinochchi district. LTTE casualty details are not available as of now. In an interesting development, pro rebel Tamilnet.com stated that "Liberation Tigers anti-aircraft guns fired at Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) warplanes that bombed a civilian area..... ". According to the article, SLAF bombers struck a civilian area. However it is a well known fact that LTTE does not deploy AA guns in areas that is of no military significance, especially given the limited availability of such weapons. Therefore the credibility of Tamilnet's claim is arguable. LTTE does have several 14.5mm AA guns which can hit low flying bombers and there have been instances where SLAF's MiG-27s received minimal damages from these while flying low. However we can confirm that no damages were done to SLAF planes on this occasion.