Sri Lanka News

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Suicide boat suspects talk to Indian police

By Walter Jayawardhana


The interrogation of the two Black Tigers- the suicide bombers arrested by the Tamil Nadu police has revealed that they have had the traditional meal with the leader of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) before they set on a journey of suicide mission to blow up Kankesenturai Harbor in Northern Sri Lanka.

The two Black Tigers were among other Sea Tigers who met their leader before they embarked on their mission that ended abruptly    when they were arrested by the Coast Guard of India at an undisclosed place.

It is traditional for the LTTE leader to partake a meal with LTTE cadres when they are sent on a mission that has no chance of survival.

The suicide boat case has now been transferred to the specialized Q Branch of the Criminal Investigation Department of the Tamil Nadu police that deals with political militancy in the state. Many years ago the branch was created to deal with Indian Naxalites.

The Q Branch operates like a military intelligence unit, cautiously gathering minute details, before arresting anybody. Police reports coming from Tamil Nadu show the whole Q Branch is preoccupied with LTTE these days. Acting on intelligence gathered from varied agencies, it was the Q Branch police officers who discovered tons of steel ball bearings being transported in a vehicle to be taken to Sri Lanka for the manufacture of claymore bombs.

The case relating to the suicide boat that has been just now transferred to the Q branch started when the Indian Coast Guard intercepted a fibre glas boat in mid seas off Kodiakarai coast on February 13.   Five persons including an Indian were on the boat.  They were armed with a AK-47 assault gun, ammunition, grenades and a satellite phone.  The boat was towed towards Chennai and anchored there for five days without anyone knowing that the boat was laden with high explosives on its walls – a mixture of RXD and TNT.

It was the intense interrogation of the five men that revealed that the boat was laden with the most lethal explosives to explode on impact. They told Indian detectives that the boat was meant to explode the Kankesenturai (KKS)  harbor in Jaffna peninsula.  Warships of the Sri Lanka navy are usually anchored in the KKS harbor very often.  With the judicial permission the security personnel towed the boat away to the mid sea and exploded it for security reasons.

Police say they are currently investigating and collecting details about the calls made over the satellite phone, with the LTTE headquarters in Kilinochchi and Mulativu.  As soon as those investigations are over the subpoenas will be served on all suspects. 

The five suspects will be charged under the Indian Arms Act of 1959, the Explosive Substances Act  of 1908 and the Foreigners Act.


March 3, 2007 - Posted by | News and politics

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