Sri Lankan army captures another LTTE bastion

Published: January 29, 2009 - 20:16 Updated: January 29, 2009 - 20:19

Hardnews Bureau

One of the last bastions of the LTTE, the Visuamadu town, is reported to have fallen to the Sri Lankan army. Troops are now engaged in mopping up the remaining LTTE resistance south of Visuamadu and Piramanthal Kulama. Meanwhile, a UN convoy carrying hundreds of people wounded in shelling between Tamil Tiger rebels and the Sri Lankan military, which was being held back for last two days, left the war zone on Thursday, the United Nations said.

Forging ahead with their offensive against the LTTE,  Sri Lankan forces have finally taken over  the Visuamadu town which is seen as the nerve centre of the Tamil Tigers' artillery power. The Sri Lankan troops also captured some LTTE soldiers and a 35-feet submarine-type craft as well as other vessels.

LTTE cadres were unable to withstand the military onslaught. They have reportedly fled towards the declared safer zones at Teravilkulam and Udayarkattukulama, unidentified Sri Lankan military sources have been quoted as saying. The operation was carried out by the 58 Division of the Sri Lankan army. It gained control over the Visuamadu town in the final phase of operations against the LTTE after hours of fierce fighting with the rebels. Following that, troops were conducting search and clearing operations in the captured town.

The capture of Visuamadu town came four days after the Sri Lankan army wrested control of the coastal town of Mullaittivu, headquarters of 'Sea Tigers', the coastal wing of LTTE. The troops have also gained control over a 10-km stretch of the road, running north of Visuamadu via Puliyampokkanai towards Chundikkulama.