Thursday, July 31, 2008

8 LTTE cadres killed in fighting : Palamoddai

At least 7 LTTE fighters were killed in fighting that ensued between the Sri Lanka army and the LTTE yesterday, in Palamoddai region. 8 bunkers built by the LTTE in the are have been overrun by the troops. 58 division infantry units moved into LTTE held territory moments after a heavy artillery barrage pounded the area.

Meanwhile the Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) flew a bombing sorties on an LTTE position after nearly a week long silence. The target was a suicide bomber training facility in Thirivaiaru, located 3 kilometers south east of Kilinochchi. You can download the UAV footage of the bombing from here (Source:

In other news another LTTE operative was arrested in Indian by the Thamil Nadu police intelligence unit. The LTTE cadres, identified as "Thambianna" is supposed to be a key figure in LTTE's supply network in Thamil Nadu. Five Yamaha 40HP boat engines ready to be sent to Sri Lanka were also captured by the police. Similar engines are frequently used by the sea tigers to power their medium sized craft.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Plans to recruit more Special Forces

The Sri Lanka Army plans to increase the manpower of it's elite special forces (SF) regiments to 8000. Majority of the new recruits will be drawn from recent and ongoing recruitment campaigns and the rest from existing formations of the army. Currently there are 4 operational Special Forces regiments with around 3000 personnel on active duty.

Meanwhile LTTE casualties from recent fighting in Mallavi are much higher than the initially claimed figures. The army has recovered 38 bodies as well as remains of at least 20 more. However the actual LTTE deaths are exceed 100 according to ground based intelligence sources. The number of LTTE cadres injured is not known. SLA casualties stand at 18 killed and 24 wounded. LTTE's claims of 26 SLA Special Forces units being killed in battle are false. Majority of SLA casualties are from the 57 division.

The army has recovered a haul of weapons during recent fighting in Mallavi region and these include a 120mm mortar launcher and two 81mm mortar launchers.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Heavy LTTE casualties in Mallavi fighting

More than 30 LTTE cadres including 2 Lt. Colonels of LTTE's elite Charles Anthony brigade, were killed in fierce firefights that raged in Mallavi today (25th). Fighting broke out when advancing troops of the 57 division were met with a medium scale LTTE counter offensive near Vavunikulam tank. 57 division soldiers, assisted by the army's special forces units, were able to successfully resist the LTTE attempt to regain control of area surrounding the tank.



Image Source: SL ARMY 

Troops have so far been able to find 33 bodies (27 male and 6 female) of slain LTTE cadres. In addition to the individuals identified as Pallawan (LT. Colonel) and Ambumanii (Major), 6 more senior cadres from the Charles Anthony brigade have been killed in battle. Troops have also recovered a large haul of arms and ammunition left behind by the tigers.

Meanwhile the Sri Lanka Navy  FACs attacked a LTTE boat movement off Mullaithivu coast yesterday (24th) evening. A group of 10 small LTTE boats were targeted by the gunboats and 3 of them submerged after taking damage. Naval commandos from the Special Boat Squadron (SBS) were also deployed for this mission.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Air Force raids LTTE training facility

A group of bombers from the Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) 10th fighter squadron took to the skies from their home base in Katunayake yesterday (22nd) at 8.15 am. Their target was an LTTE training facility located north east of Uddayarkattukulam, Mullaithivu. Intelligence sources had previously suggested that a group of LTTE fighters were undergoing training at the target location. Fighter pilots confirmed that the target was accurately hit.

Air Force intelligence units now believe that more than 20 personnel from LTTE's notorious 'black tiger' suicide squad were killed in the attack. According to intelligence sources, these cadres were undergoing special training in a training facility deep inside the jungles of Uddayarkattukulam. Uddayarkattukulam is located 20kms east of Iranamadu, which is another tiger stronghold.

Meanwhile the sacred statue of Our Lady of Madhu has now been brought back to government controlled territory. The statue was moved further into LTTE held territory (to a church in Thewayampiddi) when the army closed in on the church.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Tigers announce unilateral ceasefire during SAARC summit

Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) have announced an 8 day unilateral ceasefire during the SAARC summit 2008. The full statement including Pro LTTE media comments can be found here (If you are accessing Internet from Sri Lanka, click here).

Strangely enough, LTTE's latest move comes in after a series of defeats suffered at the hands of armed forces in the Wanni theatre of battle.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Army commandos kill 13 LTTE cadres : Murunkalayadippudi

LTTE cadres fleeing further north after the fall of their base in Illuppaikadavai were attacked by a group of army commandos in Murunkalayadippudi yesterday evening. 13 LTTE cadres have been killed in this incident. Murunkalayadippudi is located around 3km north of Illuppaikadavai along the A-32 road.

After the capture of Illuppaikadavai yesterday, forces have uncovered an underground bunker complex in the LTTE base. Base buildings were well constructed and it is assumed that 100-150 LTTE cadres were stationed there when it was fully operational. Troops have so far recovered 13 bodies of LTTE cadres who perished in battles in this region.

It was only two days ago the troops uncovered an underwater jetty in recently captured Viduthalaithiv sea tiger base south of Illuppaikadavai. The 150m long jetty could have easily concealed more than 100 small sea tigers boats anchored there.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Army captures Illuppaikadavai while Air Force targets sea tigers in Nachchikuda

Sri Lanka Army's 58 division and the Commando regiment brought the town of Illuppaikadavai under their control today (20th) after a prolonged firefight with LTTE cadres in the region. Illuppaikadavai housed a large LTTE base which was used for multiple purposes by the tigers including land and sea operations. Regular infantry units from the 58 division as well as small groups of army commandos had surrounded the area by yesterday and moved ahead of their positions early morning today. LTTE retreated further north after suffering casualties at the hands of advancing forces. Illuppaikadavai is located around 10km north of Viduthalaithiv, where the tigers lost control of a major sea tiger base recently.

Map image

As we reported earlier, the Air Force has been continuously targeting LTTE cadres who retreated from Viduthalaithiv. A sea tiger boat movement was attacked by SLN patrol craft and by SLAF bombers today evening just 3km south of Nachchikuda. 3 boats were confirmed to be destroyed while another 3 more are believed to be damaged. Nachchikuda, where LTTE maintains another sea tiger base, is located a further 15kms north of Illuppaikadavai. It is believed that a large number of LTTE cadres who fled Viduthalaithiv are currently stationed in this base. It can be assumed that the 58 division will soon lay siege this base, considering the fact that they have already advanced two more kilometers north after the capture of Illuppaikadavai.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Air strikes continue on LTTE positions north of Viduthalaithiv

After the army's capture of Viduthalaithiv sea tiger base on early morning last Wednesday (16th), LTTE activity further north of the base has increased. This is due to the fact that some of the LTTE cadres who were manning the base fled in the face of the army advance along with some of the hardware on the base. Around 30 LTTE cadres are believed to have been killed in the battle during which the army took control of a well fortified 2km long defence line in close proximity of the base. Exact number of LTTE casualties are not known. The rest of the LTTE cadres manning the base have fled further towards the north along with some of the military hardware (while leaving behind some) in the base.


Image: Soldiers of the Sri Lanka Army after the capture of Viduthalaithiv. One of the boats left behind by the tigers can also been seen. Source :

The air force has been actively targeting the cadres who managed to escape and who are now trying to station themselves further north of Viduthalaithiv. On the 16th, Mi-24 helicopter gunships attacked two boats around 5km north of the base. On the same day, SLAF's bombers attacked a medium sized sea tiger base some 40km north of Viduthalaithiv. On yesterday (17th), Mi-24s attacked another LTTE regrouping attempt in Iluppaikkadavai which is located 5km north of the fallen base.

The army will maintain a permanent presence in Viduthaliathivu due to its strategic importance in the defence of the western coastline of the island. Naval Commandos of the Special Boat Squadron (SBS) along with other regular and elite infantry units of the army will most likely be stationed there once ongoing search operations in the area are completed.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Viduthalaithiv falls to the army

Sri Lanka Army (SLA) 's 58 division has been able to take control of the Viduthalaithiv town as of today (16th). LTTE maintained a major sea tiger base in the area which plays a vital role in providing supplies to the organization. In addition to its role as a logistics base, Viduthalaithiv has been the launching pad for several sea tiger raids on naval outposts recently.

According to military intelligence, the LTTE have moved some of their hardware and personnel further northwards, deep into LTTE held territory. The base has been under siege for days, both by regular infantry units of the 58 division as well as by squads of commandos. 

Viduthalaithiv, located 20km north of Mannar, has been under LTTE control for nearly 19 years.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Special security for 3 VIPs during SAARC summit

A special security plan will be launched to ensure protection of 3 VIPs whose lives are threatened by terrorist attacks as per intelligence information. These VIPs are due to arrive in Sri Lanka for the SAARC summit that is to be held later this month. The special security program will include defenses for terrorist attacks from air and land as well as monitoring suspicious activity using advanced surveillance equipment.

In addition to the security plan launched by Sri Lankan forces, the respective VIPs will also bring their own security personnel. For example the Indian prime minister will be accompanied by the National Security Guards (Aka Blackcats). In addition to ground troops, several helicopters of the Indian Air Force will also be part of the air defence system during the SAARC summit. At least 3 ships of the Indian Navy are also deployed in the seas off Sri Lanka during this time.

Meanwhile the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) are facing increased pressure from the armed forces in Mannar front. One of their major sea tiger bases in Viduthalaithiv is now under siege by the army's 58 division. In addition to the regular infantry units of the 58 division, several squads of the Commando regiment are also deployed in this area. It was only 5 days ago that 12 personnel from the Bravo Squad of 2nd commando regiment infiltrated the southern defence line of Viduthalaithiv and killed 27 LTTE cadres. More than 150 experienced cadres from LTTE's battled hardened brigades were called in by LTTE's Mannar commander Lakshman, to repel the Commando raid. Sgt A. Kumara and Corporal N. Wanasinghe who lead two of the three 4-man teams into battle were killed in action during the 6 hour firefight that ensued. The LTTE has further reinforced its defences around Viduthalaithiv after this incident.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Public transport attacked in Buttala-Kataragama road

A public transport bus was attacked in Buttala - Kataragama road today killing at least 3 people and injuring 15 more. The bus was en route to Kataragama from Monaragala when it was attacked.

LTTE activity in this region has gradually increased over the last year.

Update: 4 killed and 25 injured

Monday, July 7, 2008

More additions to the Commando Regiment

203 Sri Lanka Army soldiers who completed training in the commando training center in Kuda Oya graduated today (7th). Revamped commando training now includes training in deep battle space operations in addition to the regular courses. The new additions to the commando regiment comes at a time when the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) is locked in a full scale war with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).

In the past, army's elite troops in Commando and SF were used extensively to carry out special operations and deep battle space. The situation now has somewhat changed with even regular infantry units (specially in 57, 58 and 59 divisions) receiving specialized training and thus obtaining the capability to successfully carry our special operations.

In addition to the Commandos , there are around 2500 special forces (SF) in the army as well as around 7000 Special Task Force (STF) personnel in the police.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Mig27 skids off runway at Katunayake

A Mig27 jet bomber of SLAF's 5th Jet Squadron skidded off the runway at Katunayake while landing after an air raid on a known LTTE position. The exact amount of damage caused to the aircraft in this incident is still being assessed.

Meanwhile the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) marked the 21st anniversary of their first suicide bombing today. The first ever suicide bombing of the LTTE was carried out by 'Captain' Miller (Valipuram Vasanthan) on 5th of July 1987, when he rammed an explosive laden truck into the Sri Lanka Army base in Nellyadi. 39 SLA soldiers perished in this attack. Since then the tigers have been carrying out frequent suicide bombings in both civilian and military targets alike. According to LTTE released figures, 356 cadres have committed suicide for the organization.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

VVIP Transport hit by small arms fire

A VVIP transport helicopter (Bell 412) was forced to perform an emergency landing in Ampara today, when it ran out of fuel in mid air. The unexpected fuel loss was caused by a bullet that is suspected to have been fired using a low caliber weapon. The damaged aircraft is said to be in repairable condition. The chopper was assigned to facilitate VVIP transport related to the President's visit to Arugam Bay in the Eastern province.

Meanwhile 8 bombers of the SLAF launched an air attack on a special training base of the LTTE north east of Mankulam. The raid was conducted at 6am in the morning. Casualty details are not available as of now.

In other news, the Air Force has flown several night time missions using its bombers during the past 2 weeks. The bombers flew over Kilinochchci, the de facto capital of LTTE, at least 3 times but did not engage in any bombing raids.