Monday, June 25, 2007

A tragic ambush - 1994 April


Note: This tragic ambush happened way back in 1994 when there was an offensive to capture Thoppigala was ongoing which ultimately succeeded. However LTTE crawled into Thoppigala when troops deployed there were redeployed in the north.

"In the recent Muhamalai battle II which went wrong for the SLA (although SLA killed over 200 tigers in that), a couple of SLA platoons, many with wounded, got separated from the main units and were later captured by the LTTE and carted off to somewhere in the Vanni. There, the LTTE women cadres are reported to have first danced around the terrified captives screaming wildly and started hacking them with machetes and swords. This info. which came from a Karuna mole in the LTTE, was later confirmed when the dead bodies were handed over to the ICRC and delivered to the SLA whereby almost all the bodies were noticed to have deep cut wounds that a soldier would not get in today's battles.

So, the LTTE treatment of captured SLDF boys is nothing new. I've heard many other stories with gruesome details, but as those have not been published in the media.

When you think that these are the same killers who have raided poor Sinhela farming villages in the Trinco/Ampara districts and carried out horrific atrocities, it is easy to understand this sort of cruelty to captured soldiers is nothing.

In the village attacks, the typical modus-operandi is as follows:

First the LTTE raiders would forcefully grab the infants off their mothers protective hands and then taking the infants by the legs, smash their skulls on mud huts and tree trunks so that the brain matter from the burst skulls would splash onto the screaming mothers who would then be either summarily shot, hacked and left to bleed, or instantly beheaded."


Amnesty International also highlighted the following information about the above mentioned LTTE tactics.

"Kumar* (a pseudonym) was just 12 years old when he smashed the head of a Muslim baby against a wall during an attack on a village. He later described how he felt no remorse about killing the child and then hacking to death the mother. In fact, he said they deserved to die. The attack had been organized by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), an armed Tamil opposition group fighting for an independent state called "Tamil Eelam" in the north and east of Sri Lanka."


Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) / Sinha Guwan Hamudawa

Bullet used in ACF killing removed from evidence?

A bullet being used in an investigation into the killings of 17 aid workers last August may have been removed from evidence, an international legal watchdog said yesterday.

The International Commission of Jurists said its observer on the probe, senior British lawyer Michael Birnbaum, found signs that a 5.56 calibre bullet was removed and substituted with another type in evidence submitted to local magistrates.

Bullets of 5.56 calibre are used in M-16 rifles, the same type of weapon used by some Sri Lankan special forces, the non-governmental organisation added in a statement.

Seventeen local employees of the French charity Action Contre La Faim (Action Against Hunger) were found shot dead in the charity's offices in the northeastern coastal town of Muttur in August 2006.

The murders still have to be solved. Nordic truce monitors have blamed the Muttur killings on government forces, but the government has denied any role in the massacre.

“Given this new information, the ICJ is calling for the President of Sri Lanka to order renewed, impartial and thorough investigations ... and to ensure those responsible are prosecuted,” the statement said.

Mr. Birnbaum had already raised concerns about the ballistics evidence in his main report in April.

In an additional report this month, “he raises serious concerns about evidence that a bullet has been removed from the evidence submitted on March 7 by the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) as exhibits to the Kantale Magistrates Court in charge of the inquest,” the ICJ said.

Birnbaum's finding revolves around the report of an Australian pathologist, Malcolm Dodd, who reported that eight bullets -- including one 5.56 calibre -- were recovered from seven bodies during a post mortem examination in October 2006.

However, a government analyst later concluded that all of the bullets appeared to be of 7.62 calibre, according to Mr. Birnbaum.

“There is therefore evidence to indicate that the 5.56 calibre bullet was removed from the evidence submitted as exhibits to the Kantale Magistrate, and that another bullet of a different type was substituted,” the ICJ added.


Japan helps with "Sri lanka Piece process"

While Defence Authorities probed the LTTE’s acquiring of what was believed to be Chinese built military hardware, it has now been revealed that the rebels possess Japanese manufactured equipment, including radars, a Defence official said. The revelation comes after security forces recovered a powerful radar from an LTTE vessel seized by the Navy following a fierce battle off Point Pedro last week.

“It was manufactured in Japan and it is a custom built item for which the manufacturer could be traced together with the buyer,” the official said.He also said four Yamaha 250 horse power engines which were found from the boat were also products of Japan. “Manufactures don’t normally issue such types of engines without proper permission from a government,” the official added.

Earlier it was revealed the 14.5 mm twin barrel weapons fixed on the vessel were Chinese manufactured prompting the relevant authorities to take up the matter with the Chinese government.

The Navy recovered the radar along with several weapons and a Global Positioning System (GPS) from the damaged LTTE vessel last week.