The LTTE is trying to stop Tamil civilians from fleeing the battle
zone. The LTTE needs to control a large portion of the Tamil population,
otherwise it will not have enough recruits, or people to tax. But this policy
is keeping civilians in a battle zone, where they are exposed to artillery fire
and air attacks. In some cases, the LTTE is deliberately placing their
artillery among civilians. When the government locates the LTTE guns, and
returns fire, the dead civilians become another bit of LTTE propaganda..
The LTTE is also using thousands of land mines to prevent civilians from
getting to government controlled territory.
12, 2006: The air force is the principal weapon in the hunt for dozens of 122mm
and 152mm guns that comprise the LTTE artillery force. Smuggled in by
ship over the years, along with thousands of shells, the Russian made
guns provide long range firepower for attacks on army bases and front line
trenches. The guns are constantly moved, to avoid attacks by army artillery or
air force bombers. But, one by one, the guns are getting hit and taken out of
action. The naval blockade is cutting off the supply of ammunition.
11, 2006: Three days of fighting in the east has left 24 soldiers dead, and
over 3,000 Sinhalese refugees.
10, 2006: Fighting in the east left several hundred dead or wounded. Many of
them were civilians, caught by shelling because the LTTE placed their guns in
residential areas. The LTTE hopes to get the government some bad press, and
take the pressure off the LTTE. At the moment, the LTTE is widely regarded as a
terrorist organization. This is hurting the organization in Europe, where the
police in France and Britain are investigating the terrorist tactics of the
LTTE among Tamil migrants. The LTTE gets most of its money from the Tamil
migrants, and has been come increasingly violent about it.
9, 2006: Fighting in the northeast caused several hundred casualties, including
at least fifty dead. Thousands of Tamils have fled the area where the fighting
is taking place. In retaliation, LTTE artillery has been fired at Sinhalese
(native Sri Lankan) villages.
7, 2006: The government has implemented more anti-terrorism laws (making it
easier to arrest and prosecute terrorist suspects), but refuses to ban the
LTTE. This, it is felt, would make it more difficult to negotiate a peace deal
with the separatist organization.