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Government Gazette

BIA night flights from July

COLOMBO: Twenty four hour operations at the Bandaranaike International Airport will resume next month.

Government Defence spokesman Minister Keheliya Rambukwella told a press briefing at the Media Centre for National Security that the arrangements have been made to commence normal 24 hour operations at the BIA from next month as the Air Force had guaranteed security for the airport.

“We are very hopeful that from the first week of July, we will be opening the airport for 24 hours operation,” Rambukwella said.

He said the decision to open airport for 24 hours was taken after extensive meetings between the Air Force and Airport authorities. Details have already been worked out.

Rambukwella said the Air Force has given an assurance that they have acquired required equipment necessary for detecting and identifying any suspicious aircraft.

“The Air Force has given an assurance that they can control the situation.”

Military spokesman Brig, Prasad Samarasinghe said Security Forces captured three more LTTE camps around Thoppigala which is on the verge of falling to the hands of soldiers. Violent confrontations flared up in Narakamulla in Batticaloa.

“Our troops have captured three camps and there are about 30 bodies of LTTE cadres are scattered around those camps and many are fleeing the area,” Samarasinghe said. Troops also found a large stock of weapons, ammunition and other military equipment.

He said two soldiers also sustained injuries during fighting on Tuesday.

“Fleeing LTTE cadres are confronting our forces at different places, said Samarasinghe adding that on Tuesday night army troops killed seven LTTE cadres, after a brief clash in Thrikonamadu, Kalkuda and Yakkkuray.

Samarasinghe said troops have killed at least 188 LTTE cadres following the battle for Thoppigala, the last LTTE stronghold in the east, since April. Nine soldiers were also killed and 78 wounded. Separately in Wanni, soldiers clashed with LTTE in two different places and this morning recovered 11 LTTE bodies with their weapons and ammunition.

Responding to a question, Samarasinghe said in a matter of few days, Security Forces can capture Thoppigala from the clutches of LTTE after a lapse of 14 years.

Samarasinghe said Thoppigala is a strategic location for troops.

“For the last 14 years, we haven’t gone to that area. During 1993-1994 we were there.” He also said many LTTE cadres are surrendering to the Army in Batticaloa. Last week alone, 42 cadres surrendered to the Army and they have confessed that they cannot bear the harassment in the LTTE camp.



Gamin Gamata - Presidential Community & Welfare Service

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