SLA operation towards Pooneryn

[TamilNet, Thursday, 10 June 1999, 09:59 GMT]
Sri Lanka Army (SLA) authorities in Jaffna today confirmed that a military operation has begun in Pooneryn area, in the northwest of the island. SLA troops air lifted from Palaly Air Force (SLAF) base in seven helicopters landed in Kattunallur-Kalmunai and started moving towards Pooneryn area Thursday morning, sources in Jaffna said.

Air cover for the advancing troops was provided by supersonic jets of the SLAF they said.

Explosions and gunfire were heard as far away as Jaffna town, across the Kilali lagoon, residents said.

SLA troops from Elephant Pass camp were also advancing towards Pooneryn through Paranthan, sources said.

Security sources in Jaffna confirmed that a military operation in Pooneryn was in progress, but declined to give further details.

The SLA had a major SLA base at Pooneryn, which was overrun by the Liberation Tigers in 1993, but later re-established.

After the LTTE overran the SLA complex at Mullaitivu in 1996, the SLA closed down the Pooneryn base, moving the troops there into the Elephant Pass-Paranthan-Kilinochchi complex.

The Kilinochchi base was overrun by the LTTE in September 1998. The FDLs of both sides are located at Paranthan.


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