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DateLine Wednesday, 4 February 2009

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Nation celebrate INDEPENDENCE

*Over 10,000 Police guard the city

*Air Force nd Navy isplay might

*Around 4,200 Forces personnel for parade

Over 4,200 Security Forces personnel from the Tri Services, Police and Civil Security Force will display their military might as all arrangements have been finalised to celebrate the 61st Independence Day in a dignified and colourful manner under the patronage of President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the Galle Face Green today at 8 am, organizers said yesterday.

All arrangements have been made to celebrate this event giving top priority for the achievements of the Security Forces at a time they are engaged in the final phase of the battle against the LTTE in the North.

“One hundred eighty three officers and 4,252 other rankers from the three Forces, Police and the Civil Security Force are due to participate in the Independence Day parade whilst six officers and 105 men are due to accord the Tri -Service Guard of Honour at the celebrations,” Military spokesman Brigadier Udaya Nanayakkara said.

Officers and other rankers representing 25 Regiments, Regimental bands and the Colour Squad of the Army will participate in the Independence Day parade, he added.

“The President Guard will be the latest addition to the parade this year,” the Brigadier added.

In addition, 12 armoured vehicles, nine artillery guns, two Multi- Barrel Rocket Launchers, microwave radars, combat radar station, ground and coastal surveillance radars, direction finder and jammers mounted on vehicles will also be displayed in the parade.

A 21 one gun salute to the President and another 21 gun salute to the Nation will also be accorded during the celebrations.

The Tri Forces and Police personnel parading in the Galle Face Green the Air Force and Navy will display their latest air and sea capabilities in the air and sea in the surroundings of the Galle Face green today.

A Navy spokesman said 500 Navy personnel seamen, mid seamen, special boat squadron women sailors and patrolmen will participate in the parade.

The Navy’s Offshore Patrol Craft Sayura, Samudura and Sagara, Fast Missile Craft Suranimala, two fast gun boats Edithara and Udara representing Fast Gun Boat Squadron -III, six Fast Attack Craft representing IV th Fast Attack Flotilla, two Wave Rider Craft, four Inshore Patrol Craft and 24 Arrow Boats or Navy’s latest innovation Arrow boats Edithara and 500 Navy personnel will participate at a display of Naval might at sea by the side of the Galle Face Green.

Air Force Spokesman Wing Commander Janaka Nanayakkara told the Daily News that aircraft and helicopters Bell 412 of the No.4 VIP Squadron, MI 17 of the No 6 Squadron, Y-12 aicraft of the No.8 Squadron, two C-30 aircraft and one AN-32 aircraft of the No.2 Squadron, three MI-24 Attack Helicopters of the No.9 Squadron, three F-7 jets representing No. 5 Squadron, three Kfirs from the No. 10 Squadron and three MiG 27 from the No.12 Squadron will participate at the air show during the Independence Day celebrations.

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