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LTTE a threat to the South Asian region

LTTE with a new threat to the South Asian region
SLAF on top moral to face any attack
Special investigating committees appointed

anurapyapaa1The LTTE’s first ever air attack on the Katunayake Air Force base in the wee hours of this morning aiming at the MIG27 aircrafts became a utter failure due to the timely taken appropriate action of the Air Force, Government Cabinet Spokesman Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa said.

Minister added that in the past weeks, few highly responsible people were trying to reveal extremely classified information on MIG27 aircrafts by throwing false allegations against the Government and the Air Force, which eventually would have ended up making the terrorists informed.

A five-member committee, headed by the Chief of the Staff of the Air Force Air Vice Marshal P.B. Premachandra, has started investigating in to this attempted air attack by the LTTE. This new committee is also comprised of specialized members of the field.

Speaking at the briefing as the previous Minister of Aviation and the Public Representative of the concerned electoral area Minister Jeyaraj Fernandopulle pointed out that LTTE having air raid facilities is a threat to the whole region and not to the country alone. He highlighted that the regional strong members should take this for serious concern.

These information were revealed by the Ministers at the special media briefing held today at the Media Centre for National Security to explain about today’s incident.

Minister Yapa added that the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) is also conducting a separate inquiry in to the scene. Speaking to the Sri Lanka Government official Website Police Spokesman Senior DIG Jayantha Wickramarathne said the Inspector General of Police Victor Perera have given the directives to the Director of CID to carry out a special investigation in to this under the normal law of the country. “The CID will be investigating in to the scene and the killing of the three airmen and injured sixteen other Air Force personnel and a report will be submitted to the courts,” Senior DIG Wickramarathne further explained and stated that this is similarly done for all the killings that happen due to LTTE attacks.

While praising the Air Force personnel for making the LTTE attack a failure Minister Fernandopulle said that in 2001 July the LTTE attacked initially at the Air Force base and then the International Airport (BIA) destroying thirteen aircrafts, of both the BIA and the SLAF, but this time they couldn’t destroy any of the air crafts due to the timely defencive action taken by the Air Force personnel. In December 2001 a proposal was forwarded to the Cabinet on shifting the Air Force base to another place on security basis but due to the change of the Government during that period the proposal faded away, Minister Fernandopulle said. Yet with the new incidents, minister said that he hopes to bring forward the proposal to the cabinet.

Minister Fernandopulle added that during the past regime, the LTTE strengthened themselves using the Ceasefire Agreement as a reinforcing, recruiting tool. “During this regime, the security forces destroyed number of arms smuggling ships, boats and other vessels that were supplying weapons to the LTTE,” Minister added.

Answering to a journalist Air Force Spokesman Group Captain Ajantha Silva said, “We are highly satisfied with the present level of strength of the Air Force. We have not declined in our combatant powers. Hence, we can successfully defend even with this new appearance of the LTTE.”

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March 27, 2007 - Posted by | International News

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