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> Sri Lanka�s Long-Range Reconnaissance Patrol
Sri Lanka�s Long-Range Reconnaissance Patrol
7 April 2003
The British Refugee Council Sri Lanka monitor reported in
"LTTE negotiator Anton Balasingham claimed in a speech on 7
April in Geneva that the Sri Lankan government�s Long-Range Reconnaissance
Patrol (LRRP) had infiltrated the Tiger-controlled areas of the northern
Mr Balasingham says that a claymore remote-controlled mine was recently
found on a road on which LTTE leader V Prabhakaran was scheduled to travel.
A search operation was ordered and thousands of Tigers combed the jungles of
Vanni to apprehend LRRP members.
The LRRP is part of the Directorate of Military Intelligence (DMI), directed
from a secret location in Athurugiriya. According to Colombo newspaper
Sunday Times, this safehouse was raided on 2 January by Kandy police, who
found weapons and arrested six soldiers. Unauthorized operations were
alleged, and police filed a case against Army chief Lionel Balagalle and
Director of DMI Kapila Hendavithana. A Commission headed by former High
Court judge Dharmasiri Jayawickrema is probing DMI operations conducted from
the safehouse in Athurugiriya.
The LTTE claim that the LRRP is trained by foreign intelligence services and
responsible for the killing of LTTE leaders,
Col. Shanker, Col.
Nisam and Lt. Col. Gangai Amaran. They say others such as Col. Balraj, Col.
Jeyam and political leader SP Thamilchelvan have also been targeted. The
Army have denied LRRP operations in the north-east, but say that LTTE hit
squads have penetrated the capital Colombo.
Sources allege that Tiger intelligence chief Pottu Amman has issued an order
for the elimination of all members of the LRRP and other informants.
According to press reports, at least 20 military intelligence operatives
have been murdered since the ceasefire in February 2002. Former LTTE member
Lingasamy Devarasa, was shot on 26 April by two people who arrived in an
autorickshaw. He later died in hospital. The incident took place at Kohuwela
in Colombo. Mr Devarasa had helped in LRRP operations in Batticaloa
Another LRRP operative and former member of Tamil group PLOTE, K R Ragupathy
was killed in Mt Lavinia on 18 March. The security forces have introduced
new security measures in Colombo, including checkpoints to track down the
Tiger hit squads. Observers believe that the Tigers may have informants
within the military and warned that there will be more deaths."