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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 107

Lanka Army captures LTTE's Eastern headquarters after 14 years

Colombo, 11 July, ( The Baron's Cap in the Eastern Sri Lanka, known as the Thoppigala mountain region, the long held Eastern bastion of the LTTE rebels, fell to the hands of Sri Lanka armed forces at dawn today. "The troops are still clearing the Thoppigala area. But there are rebel pockets still in west of Thoppigala. Therefore this area has to be cleared" announced Brig. Prasad Samarasinghe, the Military Spokesman this morning.

The Thoppigala mountain is in the jungle area in Batticaloa and is located 220km east of Colombo. It was the long held Eastern bastion of the LTTE rebels –the headquarters of Eastern LTTE command. "Narakamula, and Tharavikulama areas are where the LTTE leadership had its Eastern headquarters and other fortifications.

The military struggle to capture Thoppigala stronghold spans no less than 14 years. Military also said "loads of anti-personnel mines were also captured."

On June 9, in the aftermath of the seizure of a massive rocky plateau called "Tora Bora" while Sri Lankan Air Force fighter jets bombed rebel positions in Thoppigala, the SLA announced that "Thoppigala will fall to hands of SL Army within days."

The capture of Thoppigala, the LTTE's eastern bastion, became possible since the capture of "Tora Bora" rocky patch "cuts off rebel's supply routes", defence sources earlier said.

The Thoppigala battle has been ongoing from February 25, in the West and South of Batticaloa, the eastern capital of Sri Lanka. To-date, more than 200 LTTE rebels died and scores of them injured, the army said.

After the capture of "Tora Bora" rocky patch, soldiers also found 15 anti-personnel mines buried near Thoppigala, an officer at the Defense Ministry's media center.

The mines were later defused, the officer said on condition of anonymity in line with policy.

- Asian Tribune -

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