Army’s 58 and 59 Divisions link up liberating country’s entire coastline
Troops of the 58 Division linked up with the 59 Division freeing the last remaining coastal stretch under LTTE control yesterday morning. The link up marks the total liberation of the country’s coastline (3560.4sq.km) from three decades of terror, the military said.
According to the battlefield reports, infantrymen of Army 58 Division completed their three-day south-bound advance along the coast yesterday morning when they linked up with their comrades of 59 Division on the Mullaitivu frontage.
More than 4300 civilians held at hostage by the LTTE were rescued by 58 Division alone during yesterday’s operations. Among the refugees were many family members of senior LTTE leaders. Also, there were many junior LTTE cadres, including suicide bombers who surrendered themselves to the soldiers.
Separately, troops of 53 Division advancing southwards along the eastern bank of the Nanthikadal lagoon rescued over 4550 civilians yesterday. Over 300 others sought refuge with the 59 Division soldiers. The total number of people who sought refuge with the soldiers during last 24 hours is approximately over 9000.
Troops of 5 Gemunu Watch (5GW), 1 Gajaba Regiment (1 GR), 6 GR, 17 Sri Lanka Artillery (17 SLA), and 1 Mach Infantry operating under 53 Division yesterday engaged terrorist positions on the A-35 road, West of Vellamullivaikkal. Intercepted LTTE radio transmissions confirmed 19 LTTE cadres were killed and 24 others injured during these confrontations.
Meanwhile, 58 Division troops battling the terrorist on the coast yesterday collected 32 bodies of LTTE cadres. The soldiers also found a large stock of weapons including 183 T-56 rifles, one 12.7 mm machine gun with five barrels, two paddle guns, three MPMGs, one naval machine gun, one Radar, six suicide boats, 127 mortar bombs (60mm), eight RPG launchers, 18 disposable RPGs, two Thermo-baric weapons, six FNC weapons, one M-16 rifle, three Light Machine guns, and a large amount of small arms ammo.
Troops of 58 Division scored another significant victory in their battle against terrorism yesterday when they liberated the Kariyalamulla Tsunami relief village. The village is the only place where permanently built houses can be found between Velayamadam and Vellamullivaikkal areas. Over 4000 inhabitants of the village sought refuge with the soldiers. The unharmed buildings in the area gave lie to the repeated claims by the Western media and other pro LTTE propaganda elements that Sri Lanka Army has been indiscriminately shelling the civilian areas.
The rescue mission is continuing.