Troops carry on mopping operations as casualties mount
2008-10-20 13:23:07

Army have commenced mop up operations in Vannerikulam, west of Kilinochchi Monday morning after taking control of the area following months of fighting as the death toll of soldiers over the weekend was placed at 33 and three others missing, the Defence Ministry said.

The area would be declared as fully liberated once the mop up operations are completed, the ministry said. Meanwhile, troops of both Task Force 1 and 57 division operating on the Kilinochchi front are consolidating their new positions acquired after heavy fighting since Saturday (Oct 18).

Troops of 57 division , breached the last LTTE defence south of Kilinochchi on Saturday from the east and the west of Akkarayankulam tank while Task Force 1 troops encircling Nachchikudha, further closed up the last major sea tiger foothold on the northwestern coast, the Defence ministry added.

During these clashes on the weekend, 33 soldiers were reported killed in action , 48 injured and 3 others were reported missing. Both ground and radio monitoring sources reported heavy damages to the terrorists . Troops during clearing operations found remains of 11 LTTE cadres along with 7 T-56 riffles, the defence ministry said.

Apart from the clearing operations in the Akkarayankulam area, 57 division troops operating on the eastern flank of the Kilinochchi front attacked a group of terrorists in the area north of Kokavil last morning. Troops confirmed heavy damages to the LTTE while the army did not suffer casualties .

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