Conflict & Justice

Sri Lanka claims huge explosives discovery


A poster of slain Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) leader Velupillai Prabhakaran is seen in Mumbai on May 26, 2009.



Sri Lankan security forces say they have discovered the largest stock of explosives hidden by separatist Tamil Tiger rebels since the end of the civil war three years ago.

More than 6,000 kilograms of plastic explosives – along with live ammunition, hand grenades, mortar bombs and landmines – were found buried in a jungle area on Sunday near the northern town of Puthukudiyiruppu, where the rebels fought their last battles, police spokesman Ajith Rohana told the Agence France Presse.

“This is the biggest haul (on record) of explosives we have found,” he said, adding that the explosives were found in packed in small bags near a bunker used by the Tigers.

A senior military official said the discovery was made following a civilian tip-off, and that the quantity of explosives found “would be enough to blow up an entire town,” the Press Trust of India reports.

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According to the BBC, security forces regularly unearth ammunition and weapons in the north, where the last battles of a quarter-century-long civil war were fought between the government and the Tigers, who at the peak of their power were in control of almost a third of Sri Lankan territory.

Last month a UN expert was reported to have claimed that unexploded cluster bombs had been found, but the government rejected claims that it had used such munitions. 

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