Sri Lanka: The War At Sea


March 27, 2006: The LTTE rebels are threatening to resume the war. This appears to be the result of a feud within the LTTE. One faction wants to, if necessary, resume fighting, if the island is not partitioned. But an increasing number of Tamils disagree with the LTTE, and would accept something less than partition.

March 25, 2006: An LTTE suicide boat bomb was used to destroy a navy gunboat. Eight sailors were killed, along with six people on the LTTE boat. LTTE denied any involvement, but this is a typical LTTE attack, and a clever tactic to make the navy more cautious in how they check boat traffic off the northern coast. Despite the truce, and promise not to smuggle weapons, the LTTE has been regularly bringing in weapons by sea.

March 23, 2006: The kidnapping of teenagers, to become LTTE fighters, has declined, partly due to public pressure. In 2003, there 1,280 known cases, in 2005 there were only 675. In January of this year, there were 29 kidnappings. This includes the breakaway LTTE faction in eastern Sri Lanka.

March 22, 2006: Although LTTE violence came down in February (ten deaths, versus a hundred in the two previous months), the state of emergency will be continued. There was more gunfire between soldiers and LTTE gunmen in the northeast today, and an LTTE boat was stopped off the north coast, as the navy continued to search for gunrunners.

March 20, 2006: Because of the unrest in the LTTE controlled northeast, municipal elections there will be delayed six months, more March 30 to September.


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