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Monitoring the sea helped immensely

Commander of Northern Naval Operation Rear Admiral Somathilaka Dissanayaka who played a major role in fighting against terrorism in the Northern sea said that he took over as Northern Operational Commander on January 2009 when the situation was tense. “We overcame this situation successfully in the Northern belt tackling all efforts of the LTTE to cause damages to the Security Forces”, he added.

The Northern sea belt extending from Thalai-Mannar to Mullaitivu was under the command of Rear Admiral Dissanayake. The last battle which was conducted by the Naval troops in the North-eastern sea was carried out by the Northern and Eastern sailors. As it was a joint operation, the Northern command had contributed in the last battle against the LTTE deploying small boats and Dvora from Kankesanthurai.

Naval ships deployed in the territorial waters of Sri Lanka

He asserted that the Northern sea belt was an escape route for the LTTE cadres to seek asylum in India. It was a major task to prevent the LTTE cadres escaping towards India. With the prevailing situation, naval troops were on the alert to net the LTTE cadres fleeing over sea.

“The Tiger cadres made many efforts to flee via the sea but we foiled their attempts. Therefore, the LTTE cadres coming in or going out were prevented from doing so”, he added.

The Northeast sea belt was monitored by activating senses and radar systems set up in the sea shores within the past two months of the battle.

The Navy boats were fully equipped with arms, night vision and thermal cameras with which even a single movement of the LTTE could be detected. This made the LTTE lose their hopes of smuggling arms and taking the sea route to flee.

“We had vigilant sailors and officers who were working round the clock without taking leave for months. We worked on carefully planned and different contingency plans. Our vigilance, courage and bravery drove us to claim a great victory”, he added.

The naval troops were able to tackle the LTTE cadres. This was proved at the end of the war that all the LTTE senior leaders were killed including the LTTE leader despite the rumours being carried that many senior LTTE cadres escaped by sea”, he remarked.

The Northern operational command also contributed in the rescuing mission. “We have apprehended 500 boats where over 8,000 people were boarded and attempting to flee India from Chundikulam.

They were rescued at Point-Pedro. Sea Tiger Leader Soosai’s wife was captured by the Northern Operational Command sailors. Later they were handed over to the Eastern Operational Command”, Rear Admiral Dissanayake said.



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