Sri Lankan Tamil refugees rescued in Mannar Sea

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 23 June 2004, 16:03 GMT]
Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) Wednesday morning rescued 26 persons from seven Tamil refugee families returning from Rameswaram in South India from a sandbank in Talaimannar Sea.

All Refugees originally displaced from Gurunagar, a suburb in Jaffna town during the war were left on a sandbank in the sea by the crew of an Indian boat, Police said.

One of the refugees said they left Rameswaram Tuesday night at about eight p.m. in an Indian boat for which they paid about 300,000 rupees as fee.

They added that the Indian crew left them on the sandbank stating that they had arrived in Mannar coast, sources said.

A SLN craft in its routine night patrol spotted these refugees shouting for help. SLN personnel in the craft took them into their custody and brought them to the shore.

The refugees are being kept in the custody of the SLN and are expected to be produced in Mannar magistrate's court Thursday, police said.


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