Major LTTE massacres and destruction
The LTTE is a ruthless terrorists organization that loved bloodbath
and were motivated to create mayhem in the country. Here are major LTTE
attacks, suicide blows and massacres that targeted innocent civilians,
politicians and Security Forces.
Security Forces inspecting parts of an LTTE aircraft
November 30, 1984 - The Kent and Dollar Farm massacres was one of the
earliest massacres of civilians carried out by the LTTE. The massacres
took place in two tiny farming villages in the Mullaitivu district. At
Dollar farm, 33 Sinhalese civilians were murdered and several others
were injured in the shooting carried out by the LTTE cadres. On the same
day at Kent farm, another 29 Sinhalese civilians were massacred, thus
increasing the total death toll to 62. Among the civilian casualties
were men, women and children.
May 14, 1985 - The Anuradhapura massacre in which LTTE cadres
massacred 146 Sinhalese civilians. As the LTTE cadres entered the main
bus station, they opened fire indiscriminately with automatic weapons
killing and wounding many civilians who were waiting for buses. LTTE
cadres then drove to the Buddhist Sri Maha Bodhi shrine and gunned down,
monks and civilians as they engaged in the religious activities inside
the Buddhist shrine.
June 2, 1987 - The Aranthalawa massacre was the massacre of 33
Buddhist monks, most of them young novice monks and four civilians by
the LTTE cadres in the Ampara district of Eastern Sri Lanka.
August 4, 1990 - The Kattankudi mosque massacre was the killing of
over 147 Muslim men and boys in a mosque in Kattankudi by LTTE cadres.
It took place when around 30 terrorists raided four mosques in the town
of Kattankudi, where over 300 people were prostrate in Isha prayers.
March 2, 1991 - Deputy Defence Minister Ranjan Wijeratne and 18
persons were killed by an LTTE suicide bomber at Havelock Road in
May 21, 1991 - Former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and 18
persons were killed by a female suicide bomber in the town of
Sriperumbudur, approximately 30 miles from Chennai, Capital of the
Southern State of Tamil Nadu.
June 21, 1991 - At least 21 people were killed and more than 175
others sustain injuries as a suicide bomber drove a truck laden with
explosives into the Joint Operations Command Office at Flower Road,
November 16, 1991 - Commander of the Sri Lankan Navy, Vice Admiral
W.W.E.C. Fernando and four Navy personnel were killed by a
motorcycle-borne suicide bomber at Galle Face in Colombo.
May 1, 1993 - A suicide bomber, later identified as Babu, killed
President Ranasinghe Premadasa and 23 persons during a May Day rally at
the Armour Street Junction in Colombo.
October 24, 1994 - Leader of the Opposition and United National Party
candidate for the Presidential Elections Gamini Dissanayake and 58
persons were killed by a female suicide bomber at Thotalaga (Grandpass)
Junction in Colombo.
August 7, 1995 - A male suicide bomber set off a cartload of
explosives at Independence Square in Colombo killing 22 people and
injuring more than 40 others.
November 3, 1995 - A suicide unit intruded into an oil storage depot
in Colombo and destroyed 14 storage tanks causing $61 million in damage.
They also killed 23 soldiers and two civilians.
May 25, 1995 - The Kallarawa massacre, LTTE cadres massacred 42
Sinhalese men, women and children in Kallarawa. All the remaining
civilian survivors fled the village after this incident leading to its
The President inspecting the weapons recovered by the Armed
Forces while on his visit to Kilinochchi
January 31, 1996 - A suicide bomber detonates a truck loaded with
more than 100 kilograms of explosives in front of the Central Bank at
Janadhipathi Mawatha in Colombo killing 91 people and wounding at least
July 4, 1996 - At least 20 people, including Jaffna Military
Commander Brig. Ananda Hamangoda, were killed and approximately 60
others sustained injuries when a female suicide bomber detonated
explosives strapped to her waist as a Minister's motorcade stopped on
the Stanley Road in Jaffna town. The Tigers' target, Housing and
Construction Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva, escaped with minor
July 25, 1996 - The Dehiwala train bombing resulted in 64 civilian
deaths and wounding 400 others. The attack was carried out by the LTTE
operatives placing suitcase bombs in four carriages on a commuter train.
The simultaneous explosion of these bombs resulted in a large number of
The technique of simultaneously exploding multiple bombs in several
carriages was used for the first time in this attack.
December 17, 1996 - A Deputy Police Commander was killed when a
motorcycle laden with explosives is blown up by a male suicide bomber at
a Police unit in Amparai.
October 15, 1997 - Suicide bombers detonate a truck packed with a
large quantity of explosives in the parking lot at Galadari Hotel close
to the World Trade Center in Colombo killing 18 persons and injuring at
least 110 others.
Sri Dalada Maligawa
January 25, 1998 - 16 persons were killed as Sri Lanka's holiest
Buddhist shrine, Sri Dalada Maligawa, Temple of the Tooth Relic, in
Kandy town was attacked by a group of suicide bombers causing extensive
damages to its buildings, a cultural heritage site recognised by the
February 23, 1998 - In a suicide attack on the Point Pedro coast in
northern Sri Lanka, eight boats laden with explosives and driven by
suicide bombers crashed into two Navy ships. At least 51 troops and 28
civilians were killed in this attack.
March 5, 1998 - 36 civilians and two Police personnel were killed
while 270 civilians sustain injuries when a mini-bus, filled with
explosives, was blown up by a suicide bomber near the Maradana Police
Station in Colombo.
May 14, 1998 - Brigadier Larry Wijeyaratne, one of the Sri Lankan
Army's top commanders was killed in Jaffna by a woman suicide bomber
wearing an abdominal belt bomb.
September 11, 1998 - Mayor of Jaffna, Ponnuyhurai Sivapalan, and 11
persons were killed and 12 people were wounded when a suicide bomber
detonated a bomb strapped to his body at the Municipal Council building
May 29, 1999 - A cycle borne teenage suicide bomber kills Muthulingam
Ganeshkumar alias Razeek, leader of an anti-LTTE vigilante group called
the "Razeek Group" on the Trincomalee road in Batticaloa.
Along with Razeek, his bodyguard Chandran Jeyakumar, two civilians
and the suicide bomber were killed and eight others were wounded.
Dr. Neelan Thiruchelvam
July 29, 1999 - Moderate Tamil politician Dr. Neelan Thiruchelvam, a
Member of Parliament representing the Tamil United Liberation Front, and
two more persons were killed by a suicide bomber at the Kynsly Road,
Rosmead Place Junction in Borella, Colombo.
August 9, 1999 - In the first suicide bombing within an army camp, a
male suicide bomber enters the Vakarai camp on the pretext of collecting
weekly food relief and detonates a bomb strapped to his body killing
Major T. G. J. B. Karunanayake, the Second in Command of an Infantry
Battalion. Another Major, identified as J. H. Karunadasa, and three
soldiers were wounded in the attack.
September 18, 1999 - The Gongala Massacre was a massacre that
occurred in the small village of Gonagala, located in the Ampara
Over 50 men, women and children were hacked to death in the middle of
the night. According to survivors, there was a significant presence of
female cadres among the 75 LTTE cadres who took part in the killings.
December 18, 1999 - In a failed attempt by a female suicide bomber on
the life of former President Chandrika Kumaratunga at an election
meeting at the Town Hall in Colombo, 21 persons were killed and over 100
others sustained injuries. The former President is, however, injured in
one eye due to shrapnel injuries. Among those killed were four police
personnel, including Colombo's Deputy Inspector-General T.N. De Silva.
At least three senior ministers and some foreign journalists, including
a Japanese television crew, were among the injured.
Ja-Ela suicide attack
December 18, 1999 - A suicide bomber, detonates a bomb strapped to
his body killing retired Major General Lakshman Chula Algama and 11
persons at a United National Party (UNP) election rally at Ja-Ela in
June 5, 1999 - Thirty four Naval personnel are killed as a suicide
squad of the 'Sea Tigers' sinks a gunboat of the Sri Lankan Navy off
Vadamarachchi coast in Jaffna peninsula.
June 7, 1999 - A suicide bomber kills the Minister of Industrial
Development, C. V. Gooneratne, and 24 civilians whilst he was in a
procession organised to mark 'war heroes' day at Golumadama Junction,
September 15, 1999 - Seven people were killed and 28 others sustained
injuries when a suicide bomber, on being detected, blew himself up in
front of a busy hospital in Colombo. Health Minister Nimal Sripala de
Silva had a narrow escape as he had passed through the site barely seven
minutes before the blast.
October 3, 1999 - National Unity Alliance Trincomalee District
candidate M. L. Baithullah, a candidate for the October 10-parliamentary
elections, and 20 persons, including four police personnel were killed
and approximately 49 wounded when a suicide bomber attacked an election
rally in Muttur town.
July 24, 2001 - A group of at least 20 suicide squad cadres wearing
military uniforms and carrying shoulder-launched anti-tank weapons,
mortars, T-56 rifles and RPGs attacked the Air Force base in Katunayake
and the Bandaranaike International Airport, on the outskirts of Colombo.
Eight military aircraft, including Kifr jets, two Mi-17 helicopters, one
MiG-27 fighter, three Chinese K-8 trainer aircraft and six Airbus
passenger aircraft were destroyed in the attack. Bodies of 13 LTTE
cadres were found subsequently, including two of those who had blasted
themselves. Six soldiers and an airport engineer were killed.
August 11, 2005 - Laksman Kadirgamar was assassinated by a sniper
fire by the LTTE cadres at his residence in Longden Place, Colombo.
April 25, 2005 - Army Commander Lt. General Sarath Fonseka was
critically injured while at least eight persons were killed when a
female suicide cadre of the LTTE, disguised as a pregnant woman, blew
herself up in front of the military hospital inside the Colombo Army
headquarters. Twenty seven persons were injured in the explosion.
June 15, 2005 - The Kebithigollawa massacre. At least 60 people were
killed when the LTTE cadres detonated a claymore mine targeting a
June 26,2005 - A suicide bomber killed the SLA Deputy Chief of Staff,
Major General Parami Kulathunge, the third highest appointment in the
SLA, and three others at Pannipitiya. Eight persons were wounded in the
August 14, 2005 - At least seven persons, including four soldiers of
the SLA, were killed and 17 others sustain injuries in a suicide attack
carried out by the LTTE targeting Pakistan High Commissioner Bashir Wali
Mohammad in Colombo.
The envoy, returning from the Pakistan Independence day function at
the mission, escapes unhurt though his vehicle suffered minor damage.
November 9 2005 - The Navy personnel foil a major LTTE attack on the
civilian passenger vessel 'Green Ocean I' with 300 Jaffna bound
civilians from Trincomalee in the sea off Nagarkovil destroying a
flotilla of Sea-Tiger boats, including three suicide boats. Over 40 sea
Tigers believed to be killed in the incident.
October 16, 2006 - Digampathana truck bombing. A suicide bombing was
carried out by the LTTE a convoy of 15 military buses at Digampathana,
near the Dambulla town and Habarana.
The buses were carrying more than 200 sailors from Trincomalee who
were going on leave. The bombing killed between 92 and 103 sailors and
wounded more than 150 people, including over 100 sailors. The bombing
also killed a number of civilians, including eight employees of the Sri
December 1, 2006 - A suicide attack by the LTTE, targeting the
Defence Secretary, Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, at Dharmapala Mawatha in Colombo
injured seven army personnel and seven civilians.
Two of the injured army personnel subsequently succumbed to their
injuries. The suicide bomber rammed his three-wheeler into the convoy of
the Defence Secretary. Gotabhaya Rajapaksa.
February 3, 2008 - At least 12 persons were killed and around 100
injured, 10 of them critically, when an LTTE female suicide militant
blew herself inside the Colombo Fort Railway Station.
The bomber who apparently arrived at the railway station in a train
blew herself opposite the station cafeteria on platform number three at
The LTTE would have targeted Security Forces personnel who were
returning to their bases after rehearsals at the Galle Face Green.
April 6, 2008 - The Highway Minister and Chief Government Whip
Jeyaraj Fernandopulle and 13 others were killed in a suicide attack
carried out by the LTTE at a sporting event in the Weliweriya area in
Fernandopulle was about to inaugurate a marathon when a suspected
LTTE suicide bomber disguised as a marathon runner blew himself up,
killing the Minister and at least 11 others, including National Athletic
coach Lakshman De Alwis and Olympic marathon runner and national record
holder K.A. Karunaratna.
June 16, 2008 - A suspected LTTE suicide bomber on a motorbike blew
himself up in front of a Police building in Vavuniya, killing 12 police
personnel, including three female Police officers and wounding 23
The suicide bomber blew himself up in front of the SSP office complex
in Vavuniya targeting the Police personnel leaving the SSP office for
their duties at around 7.10 am.
October 6, 2008 - 28 persons, including UNP NCPC Member Maj. General
Janaka Perera and his wife; UNP Anuradhapura District Manager Dr. John
Pulle who was also the former Chairman of the Rajarata Bus Company and
his wife Dr. Mrs. John Pulle; UNP Legal Advisor Attorney-at-law A.C.S.
Hameed; NCPC UNP Member Shantha Dissanayake and UNP Provincial Council
candidate Subashi Charles were killed in a LTTE carried out suicide bomb
attack inside the UNP office near the Old Bus Stand in Anuradhapura.
More than 86 persons sustained injuries in the blast that occurred
around 8.45am during a function held to declare open the new UNP office.
March 10, 2009 - At least 14 people were killed and 46 others,
including the Posts and Telecommunications Minister Mahinda Wijesekara,
were wounded when a suspected LTTE suicide bomber blew himself up,
targeting a procession celebrating Eid-e-Milad (Prophet Mohammed's
birthday) in the Southern town of Akuressa in Matara district.