Relief supplies reach Jaffna through A9 road

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 10 March 2009, 21:47 GMT]
Despite announcement made by Commissioner of Essential Services that relief supplies to Jaffna would be sent from Vavuniyaa in 40 lorries only 22 of them arrived in Jaffna Tuesday around 7:30 p.m at Naavatku’li Government Stores, sources in Jaffna said. Jaffna Government Agent (GA) and other key government officers in Jaffna, on directives by the government, had waited at Naavatku’li to receive the convoy of lorries that were bringing goods along A9 land route for the first time after a long period, but had to cancel their program and get back to Jaffna as the lorries were late in arriving at their destination, sources in Jaffna said.

The 22 lorries began the journey from Vavuniyaa Tuesday around 11:00 a.m. with a Buddhist blessing ritual attended by Basil Rajapaksa, the brother and advisor of Sri Lankan President Rajapaksa, and Cabinet Ministers, Douglas Devananda and Risad Baduideen, sources in Vavuniyaa said.

Though the convoy of lorries had reached Kii’linochchi around 2:00 p.m., there was a long delay due to shelling reportedly launched towards areas around Pa’lai and Ki'liaali by the Tigers.

Relief supplies were brought in 20 lorries of the total 22 that arrived at the government stores at Naavatkuzhi, the sources said.

This instance of transport of goods by lorries to Jaffna peninsula along A9 route is said to be the first stage of an arrangement in which lorries carrying wares to private sector in Jaffna peninsula will be allowed in the future, Jaffna Secretariat sources said.

However, it is not known whether the public will be allowed to use the A9 route which had remained closed by the SLA since August 2006.



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