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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 109

LTTE predawn attack on Air Force base contained, Tigers lost one aircraft, while 4 airmen killed 8 injured

By Ruwan Weerakoon in Colombo.

Colombo, 22 October, (Asian Four Sri Lankan airmen were killed and eight injured in a predawn Tigers attack in the Air force base in Anuradhapura.

Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam for the first time launched an air and ground attack on the Sri Lanka air base at Saliyapura in Anuradhapura in the early hours of Monday.

According to Sri Lanka Defence sources a group of LTTE cadres infiltrated the air base around 3 this morning and launched a massive sabotage attempt at the air force facility. Also, two LTTE light aircraft dropped two bombs targeting the airbase around 4 a.m while the ground attack was continuing.

Tiger sources revealed that two of their aircrafts were involved in the bombing of the Anuradhapura air force base and one of their flight has returned to their base safely and another one missing.

According to Tiger sources, one of their flight was attacked while returning after bombing the air force base and it has not returned to the base located somewhere in the Vanni.

Information revealed two Russian built MI 24 helicopter gunships on ground were severely damaged in the attack. Eight airmen are also reported to have suffered injuries in the incident.

Meanwhile, it has been reported that a Bell 212 helicopter which was on a mission has made a crash land onto Doramadalawa, in the Mihinthale area during the confrontation was on. According to the sources the two pilots and two gunners who were onboard the helicopter, have died in the incident.

Continuous explosions were heard inside the airbase from 3:30 a.m. according to civilians in the area. The attack was continuing, after 5:00 a.m.

Sri Lanka air force sources say that the pre dawn LTTE attack at Anuradhapura airbase has been effectively countered. A major search operation has been launched in the area by army and police personnel.

An indefinite curfew has been clamped in Anuradhapura. Residents have been asked to stay indoors as the search operations continues.

Tiger causalities still not known.

- Asian Tribune -

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