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Paranthan LTTE garrison captured: At least 50 killed, over .......injured

Paranthan LTTE garrison captured: Troops make headway at Wanni battles [03rd Lead]

"Paranthan junction and its surrounding areas are now under the total control of the security forces", latest reports from the Wanni battlefront read.

The Paranthan LTTE garrison has been captured by the Task Force -1 troops today (Jan 01) early morning, following hours of bitter fighting ensued between troops and LTTE, military sources said.  The fall of Paranthan marks the dominance of security forces at the township after a decade.

The battle for Paranthan began in the early hours on Tuesday (30) when the TF-1 armor, artillery and infantry battalions commenced launching a concerted assault on the garrison town while, Army forward domination elements took on the well fortified LTTE resistance positions during surprise maneuvers made behind enemy lines.

Troops have also cutoff the vital access routes towards Paranthan along the A-9 road from North and South, reportedly killing over 50  terrorists, while injuring twice as many numbers during the intense battles, military source said.

The Paranthan LTTE garrison is strategically located, approximately 4.5km North of Kilinochchi along the A-9 trunk route and on the southern sector of Elephant Pass, another LTTE foothold, according to ground troops.

Troops of the TF-1, commanded by Brigadier Shavendra Silva, entered the Paranthan built-up assisted with close combat air support of the SLAF jets and MI-24 helicopter gunships, Wednesday morning (Dec 31). LTTE resistances and counterattacks were outflanked by the intense military armour attacks and concentrated artillery and mortar fire, ground troops said. The fighting was fierce and prolonged for hours until terrorists were completely beaten by the determined soldiers, the sources added. LTTE fighting formations mainly from the Imran Pandiyan unit led by its 'Kilinochchi-in-charge', Velavan and Jerom had made successive attempts to gain lost ground only to be left with more casualties and damages, military sources said.

Unable to withstand the fury of the combined Army and Air force onslaught, LTTE terrorists withdrew from the town in total disarray. Having inflicted heavy casualties on the enemy,  troops are now consolidating defences and advancing further east of the Paranthan junction, security sources added.

Fall of Paranthan would also open a gateway to the LTTE's remaining defences at Vaddakkachchi, and Puthukkudiyiruppu areas on the A-35 road (Paranthan- Mullaittivu), defence observers asserted. Muhamalai in the southern peninsular neck will also be untenable for the LTTE, the sources pointed out.

The fall of Paranthan, the well-fortified LTTE garrison has isolated the southern periphery of the Elephant Pass LTTE foothold and has also exposed the LTTE's main fortification at Kilinochchi, defence observers further said.

The chemical factory was the hallmark of Paranthan, providing direct and indirect income to many locals.  In 1986 SLA positioned a small administrative base at Paranthan, which was linked to the main base at Kilinochchi.  LTTE disrupted civil administration in the area in early 1990s.

SLA liberated it from the LTTE grip during the 'Sathjaya 1 & 2' military campaign conducted on Sep, 1996. However, troops had to make a tactical withdrawal in September 1998", Army sources said.

A hording at the Paranthan - Pooneryn road. TF-1 troops while advancing towards Paranthan on Wednesday( 31st Dec, 2008).




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