Situation at Katunayake brought totally under
control [5th Lead]
The tensed situation
prevailed in the Katunayake SLAF Base was brought totally under
control by the SL military forces while immediate measures were taken to
beef-up security in the area. The BIA officials said that no
alterations in flight schedules were made despite a limited shutdown of
normal functions until proper security measures were guaranteed. The BIA
Officials stated that the diverted flights due to the situation are now
arriving, provided assurance and guarantee to both passenger and cargo.
A light wing air craft manned by Liberation Tigers of
Tamil Eelam(LTTE), terrorists carried out a deliberate attack at the SL
Air Force Base at Katunayake, killing three and injuring seventeen SLAF
personnel, during the wee hours on Monday the 26th of March.
According to the Air Force officials two bombs were
dropped at the SLAF Aeronautical Engineering Wing (AEW) at Katunayake.
The sources further added that no damages to fighter craft were caused
due to the terrorist attack.
Speculation are made that the raid was carried out
through a light wing air craft similar to hand gliders which could be
assembled with minimum labour.
Meanwhile, MCNS officials stated that the injured
personnel were immediately transferred to the General Hospital at
Defence sources said that all measures were taken to
tighten the security in the area, while statements added that no
security threat prevailed to the commercials flights and passengers at
the Bandaranayke International Airport at Katunayake, which is situated
in close proximity to the SLAF base.
The BIA officials said that passenger terminals are
functioning normally since 03.30a.m, today(26), after the area was
cleared off following successive cordon and search operations.
Earlier few commercial flights were diverted to destinations at Chennai
and Malai air ports, until the area was cleared with guarantee to
Defence officials further added that the situation was
brought under total control, amidst LTTE attempts to target high profile
installation to lift its demoralizing war craze.
The LTTE terrorists carried our a similar predawn
attack at the Katunayake air base, on 24 July 2001, which set heights to
the Al-Qaeda's terrorist air attack at World Trade Centre buildings on
11th September, 2001 in the United States of America.