Sri Lanka: Desperate Last Attack Fails


March 17, 2009: The UN has protested against the LTTE forcibly recruiting its staff, and Tamil civilians, to build fortifications, move supplies and otherwise aid the LTTE military operations. There are over 50,000 civilians being held by a few thousand LTTE fighters, in less than 30 square kilometers along the northeast coast of Sri Lanka. More than 40,000 Tamil civilians have fled the shrinking LTTE enclave, but hundreds have been killed or wounded by LTTE gunmen who try to stop civilians from leaving. Army commanders expect to destroy this LTTE enclave by the end of the month, or early in April. The army is proceeding methodically, trying to keep their casualties down. The LTTE, however, are suffering several dozen dead and wounded a day. The LTTE fighters are mostly inexperienced, and don't give the advancing soldiers a hard time. But it does take time to deal with each of the LTTE strong points (usually a camouflaged bunker made of logs or earth.) The LTTE may still have one more spectacular, and deadly attack, available, so the troops are moving in slowly and deliberately.

March 16, 2009: Troops killed an LTTE suicide bomber, dressed as a soldier, while he was trying to leave LTTE held territory in the northeast. As the bomber went down, he set off his suicide bomb belt.  

March 11, 2009:  Troops reduced the LTTE enclave to 37 small kilometers, and killed the LTTE finance chief (and controller of the overseas fund raising operation).

March 10, 2009:  In the south, an LTTE suicide bomber killed 14 people outside a mosque.

March 7, 2009: The LTTE controls only about 45 square kilometers along the northeast coast. Several hundred of  the more veteran LTTE fighters launched several attacks to try and expand the rebel zone, but were defeated, losing over 200 dead.


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