Sri Lanka's Defence Secretary, Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, escapes assassination by LTTE Tamil Tiger Terrorists in Sri Lanka ....

Video in ITN -  http://www.itn.lk/

An unsuccessful attempt by LTTE Tamil Tiger Terrorists to assassinate the Defence Secretary, Gotabhaya Rajapaksa (Brother of President Mahinda Rajapaksa)

TWO SOLDIERS WHO SUFFERED fatal injuries in the LTTE suicide blast at KOLLUPITIYA, COLOMBO today (01) morning succumbed to injuries while being treated at National Hospital and Navaloka (Private) hospital, COLOMBO.

Lance Corporal P.H.P. WIJERATHNE from Sri Lanka Amy Service Corps (SLASC) was riding alongside the Defence Secretary’s vehicle at the time of the incident. He was undergoing treatment at the Navaloka (Pvt) hospital.

Lance Corporal N.K. PIYASIRI from the Gajaba Regiment, the driver of the escort Defender Jeep of the convoy, was admitted to National Hospital for urgent surgery after being critically injured. He later died at the National hospital ICU.

          According to latest reports, six soldiers and five civilians are receiving medical treatment at the National Hospital and three more soldiers at Navaloka hospitals. 

  Chronology of Suicide Bomb Attacks by LTTE Tamil Tiger Terrorists in Sri Lanka

  Suicide Attacks by the LTTE


Sri Lanka: Scandinavian Truce Monitors failed to condemn: Only expressed concern over attack on Gothabaya Rajapakse - The Scandinavian Truce Monitors known as the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) failed to condemned the suicide attack on Defese Secretary Gothabaya Rajapakse in the heart of Colombo, Friday December 1st. Instead, in a statement it has simply expressed its deep concern over the incident. The SLMM in the press statement underlined that the blast bares the hallmarks of methods used by the LTTE in the past. The statement further added, "The recent and escalating violence, including today’s attack on a high-ranking politician, threatens seriously the lives of innocent civilians in Sri Lanka." The SLMM in its statement urged the Parties to respect the Cease Fire Agreement and to give up violence. The full text of the press statement released by the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission is given below: "The Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission is deeply concerned over the attack on Defense Secretary Gothabaya Rajapakse in the heart of Colombo, Friday December 1st. The SLMM notifies that the blast bares the hallmarks of methods used by the LTTE in the past. The recent and escalating violence, including today’s attack on a high-ranking politician, threatens seriously the lives of innocent civilians in Sri Lanka. The SLMM urges the Parties to respect the Cease Fire Agreement and to give up violence." (Full report in Asian Tribune).

It Will Never Be Possible To Defeat This Great Country Through The Bloody Savagery Of The Cowardly LTTE Terrorists - Defence Secretary Secretary, Defence, Mr. Gotabaya Rajapaksa, after narrowly escaping a Tiger terrorist assassination attempt today, reaffirmed his commitment to the national need of defeating the LTTE's terrorism. Mr. Rajapaksa also appealed to the general public and the international community to refrain from taking any action that would demoralize and weaken the determination of troops who are currently engaged in defending the territorial integrity and the sovereignty of Sri Lanka. An LTTE suicide bomber set off an explosive laden three-wheeler targeting the Defence Secretary's convoy at Piththala junction in Dharmapala Mawatha, Kollupitiya around 10:30 am. this morning. The Defence Secretary escaped unhurt. 2 soldiers of the Defence Secretary's escort were killed while 14 others were admitted to hospital with injuries. Following is the full text of the statement issued by the Secretary to the Ministry of Defence, Public Security, Law and Order, Mr. Gotabhaya Rajapakse: Statement By The Defence Secretary, Gotabhaya Rajapaksa (Read full in Sri Lanka Defence Ministry).

The United States condemns terrorist attack - United States of America has condemned the terrorist attack, yesterday morning, on the convoy of Gotabaya Rajapakse, Sri Lanka’s Defence Secretary. The US Embassy in Colombo said that the attack bears all the hallmarks of an operation by the LTTE. "We once again call on the LTTE to renounce terrorism, to give up violence and to join in negotiating a peaceful solution to Sri Lanka's conflict, US Embassy statement exhorted. The full text of the statement released by the US Embassy in Colombo is given below." The United States condemns strongly the terrorist attack this morning on the convoy of Defense Secretary Rajapakse. While we are gratified that Secretary Rajapakse is safe and well, the United States extends our sincere condolences to the families of those who were killed and wounded in this terrible incident. The attack bears all the hallmarks of an operation by the LTTE. We once again call on the LTTE to renounce terrorism, to give up violence and to join in negotiating a peaceful solution to Sri Lanka's conflict (Full report in Asian Tribune).

Sri Lanka defense chief dodges attack - A suicide bomber targeted a convoy carrying Sri Lanka's defense secretary in the capital Friday, killing himself and two soldiers, the military said. The defense secretary, who is also the president's brother, was unharmed. Soon after the explosion, security officials opened fire, possibly fearing a second attack. The body of an unidentified man lay at the scene with gunshot wounds. The government blamed the separatist Tamil Tiger rebels for the attack, which appeared to target Defense Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapakse. Rajapakse "escaped unharmed when an LTTE suicide killer targeted the convoy of vehicles in which he was traveling," a government statement said, using the acronym for the rebels' official name, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. Military spokesman Brig. Prasad Samarasinghe said the bomber triggered the explosives as the five-car convoy of vehicles was passing. Samarasinghe confirmed that Rajapakse, the younger brother of President Mahinda Rajapakse, was in one of the cars. "He is safe, no harm has come to him," Samarasinghe said. Minutes after the explosion, the government released photographs of the president hugging his brother, who in another photo showed photographers the blood spatters on his white shirt. The military said two soldiers died; nine soldiers and five civilians were hospitalized. The suicide bomber apparently approached on a motorized rickshaw from the opposite direction and targeted the convoy, said Deputy Inspector General of Police, Jayantha Wickremeratne. Rajapakse, a retired military colonel, was in a bulletproof car, which was flanked by two motorcycle escorts. The U.S. Embassy condemned the explosion and called on the Tamil Tigers "to join in negotiating a peaceful solution to Sri Lanka's conflict." (Full report in Boston Globe).

It was a claymore blast: Gotabaya Rajapakse narrowly escaped - Sri Lanka's Defence secretary Gotabaya Rajapakse narrowly escaped a claymore blast this morning in Colombo city. Mr. Gotabaya Rajapakse is the brother of SL President Rajapakse as well as the Secretary of Defence. "Asian Tribune's" correspondent reveals that he literally heard the explosion - the claymore-cum-suicide bomb, which was mounted on a three wheeler at Pittala Junction, Dharmapala Road, Kollupitiya, rocked Colombo city at 10:39 am and was heard around Colombo 2 to Colombo 6.  The defence spokesman said that one person died instantly and 14 people were injured. Seven of them from the defence establishment while the other seven were civilians. Dead body of an unidentified person, believed to be the suicide cadre who rammed into the convoy was found from the scene. At least eight vehicles including the vehicle of Secretary Defence were badly damaged. In addition, many private vehicles that were passing by have been severely damaged (Full report in Asian Tribune).

Defence Secy escapes LTTE assassination bid Explosives-laden three wheeler rams convoy: Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa narrowly escaped an LTTE assassination bid in Colombo yesterday, when a suicide bomber rammed an explosives-laden three wheeler into his convoy. Two soldiers were killed in the explosion while 13 others, including civilians, were injured. A headless body, suspected to be that of the suicide bomber, was seen in the back of a pick up truck. Defence Secretary Rajapaksa was in a bullet-proof BMW 7 Series car. An unscathed Rajapaksa was whisked off to Temple Trees, where his elder brother, President Mahinda Rajapaksa greeted and embraced him. A previously scheduled National Security Council meeting was then held with their participation. The incident occurred near the traffic lights at Piththala Junction, Dharmapala Mawatha, (Green Path section) Kollupitiya around 10.35 a.m. According to defence sources, Army commandos in the back-up trail motorcycles and Land Rover Defenders successfully obstructed the three wheeler and reduced the effectiveness of the blast. "Dharmapala Mawatha was sealed off for security reasons and more than eight vehicles were badly damaged including a VIP vehicle and a Land Rover," defence sources said. A civilian car was completely burnt and two other civilian cars were also severely damaged. Several nearby houses and buildings were also damaged. "We have collected explosives materials from the scene. At the moment we can only say that the C4 explosive was fixed in the three wheeler and the explosive charge was around 10 kilos," a spokesman for the Government's Analyst's Department said. The three wheeler was a complete wreck (Full report in Daily News).

President undeterred in resolve for peace - COLOMBO: Following the LTTE suicide bomb attack targeting Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, the President's Office said President Mahinda Rajapaksa remains unshaken in his resolve to achieve peace in Sri Lanka and is undeterred in his efforts to combat all forms of terrorism and violence. In a separate statement, the Government vehemently condemned the terrorist attack. "The modus operandi of the suicide bomb attack has the hallmark of the LTTE which has a long history of suicide bomb attacks on civilian and military targets. The Government condemns this dastardly attack in no uncertain terms and wishes to emphasise that a democratically elected Government would not succumb to such terror tactics unleashed by the LTTE. The Government is totally committed to peace. However, it would not shirk its responsibilities towards the people of Sri Lanka and would not hesitate to take appropriate action to safeguard the people and the sovereignty of the State, the statement added. The Government while urging the LTTE to give up the path of terrorism and resume peace talks genuinely even at this late stage, seeks the cooperation of the international community to impress upon the LTTE the futility of terror tactics and the imperative need for resumption of peace talks to find a lasting political solution (Full report in Daily News).

National need to defeat LTTE terror - Gotabhaya COLOMBO: You may already by aware that through the blessings of good fortune, the LTTE terrorists failed in their attempt to take my life today. However contemptible their effort may be, I treat them with compassion, Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa said yesterday. "I take this opportunity to inform you that I am not ready to abandon the responsibility we have towards the country, in the face of such cowardly attacks by the LTTE, and to reaffirm our commitment to the national need to defeat the LTTE's terrorism," he said in a statement issued to the media. He said: "Far from abandoning our determination and commitment to defeat all efforts of the LTTE to achieve its bloodthirsty aims by grossly misleading the international community; in the face of attacks such as these, I would hesitate to even think of it. I wish to appeal to all our people and the international community to avoid any action that will demoralise and weaken the determination of our brave troops who are ready, at the sacrifice of their lives, to make real the dream of the President of building a new Sri Lanka, where all Sinhala, Tamil and Muslim people can live happily in peace and harmony (Full report in Daily News).

Hallmarks of LTTE involvement - US, SLMM - COLOMBO: The attack on Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa bears all the hallmarks of an operation by the LTTE, the United States stated yesterday. "We once again call on the LTTE to renounce terrorism, to give up violence and to join in negotiating a peaceful solution to Sri Lanka's conflict," the US Embassy said in a statement. The US condemned the terrorist attack. "While we are gratified that Secretary Rajapaksa is safe and well, the United States extends our sincere condolences to the families of those who were killed and wounded in this terrible incident." British Prime Minister Tony Blair had also got in touch with the High Commissioner in Colombo, expressing condemnation of the attack and his sympathies for those killed and injured. Peace facilitator Norway also vehemently condemned the suicide attack on the Defence Secretary. Royal Norwegian Embassy spokesman Erik Nurnberg told the Daily News that Norway strongly denounces the attempt on the life of the Defence Secretary. "We condemn this attack in the strongest terms. Incidents like this have kept on happening. We want to make it clear that such attacks are not going to make it easier to find a solution to Sri Lanka's problem," he said. The Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) said it is deeply concerned over the attack on the Defense Secretary. The SLMM notices that the blast bares the hallmarks of methods used by the LTTE in the past (Full report in Daily News).

Gotabhaya’s great escape - Defence Secy. in narrow shave; Two soldiers killed, 18 injured in LTTE suicide blast in Kollupitiya -  Colombo city was again plunged into panic, shock and tension yesterday when Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa - younger brother of President Mahinda Rajapaksa and known to be one of the most powerful men in the administration - miraculously escaped unhurt when an LTTE suicde bomber attacked his convoy at Kollupitiya yesterday. Pandemonium reigned as bodyguards who rescued the defence secretary from his bullet proof BMW, then rushed him to Temple Trees in a defender jeep while firing in the air to clear the way. The firing sent shock waves around the country amidst reports that a gun battle had erupted between security forces and LTTE cadres. Half an hour later national television showed the defence secretary being hugged by the President at Temple Trees. Some blood was seen on the shirt of the smiling defence secretary. The attack was carried out by a male suicide bomber riding a three wheeler, at 10.40 am, at the Sir James Peiris Mawatha - Anagarika Dharmapala Mawatha junction. Though Mr. Rajapaksa escaped, two soldiers were killed and 18 including security forces personnel and civilians injured. Gothabaya Rajapaksa was on his way to attend a National Security Council meeting at Temple Trees when his convoy came under attack. The suicide bomber driving a red three wheeler bearing the number WP-GH 0617 apparently failed to ram into the bullet proof BMW of the Defence Secretary, due to heavy traffic at the intersection. Unable to manoeuver the explosives laden three-wheeler towards the BMW, he detonated himself a few metres away from the Defence Secretary’s car, between two civilian vehicles, causing a Defender jeep providing security to Mr. Rajapaksa to crash into his vehicle (Full report in Daily Mirror).

Renounce terrorism, US tells Tigers - The United States strongly condemned yesterday’s suicide attack targeting Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa and blamed the LTTE for the blast which left three dead and at least 18 injured. Making a brief but hard-hitting statement, US Ambassador Robert O. Blake said, “The suicide attack bears all the hallmarks of an operation by the LTTE. We call upon the LTTE to renounce terrorism, give up violence, and pursue a peaceful path to end the conflict.” (Full report in Daily Mirror).

Security officer recalls horrifying moments - Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa’s personal security officer yesterday recalled the horrifying moments soon after the blast and described how he sprang to action making sure that Mr. Rajapaksa was in safe hands. PSO H.D. Kapuhena was seated in the front seat of the VIP car along with the driver while Mr. Rajapaksa was in the back seat as they were heading towards Temple Trees from the Bauddhaloka Mawatha official residence. No sooner Mr. Kapuhena heard the blast, he saw Mr. Rajapaksa who was seated on left side of the car been thrown towards the right, he told the Daily Mirror. Luckily for Kapuhena it has been a norm to keep his gas mask on while travelling with Mr. Rajapksa. “I jumped over to the back seat and immediately attended to Rajapaksa who was virtually lying on the seat,” he said. He put a gas mask and a body armour on Rajapaksa and shouted for help as the door of the car had got automatically locked following the blast. Security officials broke open the door and Kapuhena in tight embrace ushered his boss to the Defender right in front of the car and the vehicle sped off to Temple Trees. Mr. Rajapaksa was safe and sound except for a few blood stains on his shirt. Sergeant Kapuhena who was attached to the Presidential Security Division has been working as the PSO of the Defence Secretary for one year (Full report in Daily Mirror).

Two succumb to injuries in Kollupitiya blast - Two soldiers who suffered fatal injuries in the LTTE suicide blast at Kollupitiya, Colombo yesterday morning succumbed to injuries while being treated at the Colombo National Hospital and Navaloka (Private) Hospital, Colombo. Lance Corporal P.H.P. Wijerathne from the Sri Lanka Army Service Corps (SLASC) was riding alongside the Defence Secretary’s vehicle at the time of the incident. He was rushed to the Nawaloka Hospital and succumbed to his injuries. Born in Arawwala, in Kurunegala in 1974 he has served in operational areas and been awarded with service medals such as Riviresa Campaign Service Medal and Purna Bhumi Medal. Lance Corporal P.H.P. Wijerathne leaves his wife and one child. The other soldier who succumbed to injuries, Lance Corporal N. K. Piyasiri from the Gajaba Regiment, the driver of the escort Defender Jeep of the convoy, was admitted to the Colombo National Hospital for urgent surgery after being critically injured. He later died at the National hospital ICU. Lance Corporal N. K. Piyasiri of Warakkandeniya Neluwa in Galle was born in 1975. He was awarded with Purna Bhumi and Desha Putra service medals. According to latest reports, six soldiers and five civilians are receiving medical treatment at the National Hospital and three more soldiers at Navaloka hospital (Full report in Daily Mirror).

War veteran survives the suicide attack: The Army Commandos foil LTTE's cowardly attempt on the Secretary Defence - Secretary to the Ministry of Defence Public Security, Law and Order Gotabaya Rajapakse survived a cowardly suicide bomb attack carried out by the LTTE terrorists this morning.  An explosive laden three-wheeler rammed on the motorcade carrying the Defence Secretary around 10:35 a.m. at Kollupitiya in Colombo causing a massive explosion. Sri Lanka Army Commandos, who were escorting the motorcade, obstructed the dashing three-wheeler and successfully reduced the effect of the explosion. Two Army Commandos died and 10 others suffered injuries in the explosion. At least seven civilians suffered injuries and few vehicles were destroyed. The security forces personnel immediately evacuated the injured to the hospitals. The military experts told defwence.lk website that the failure of the LTTE terrorists in the attack was mainly due to the true professionalism shown by the Army Commandos. The Commandos regrouped with in seconds after the terrifying explosion and evacuated the Secretary of Defence as well as the injured to safety with in minutes. The situation has been brought back to normal in the Island capital. The Secretary Defence met His Excellency the President Mahinda Rajapakse at the Temple Trees following the attack (Full report in Sri Lanka Defence Ministry).

Sri Lanka President's brother escapes bomb blast - Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse's brother Gothabaya, who is also the island's defense secretary, narrowly escaped a suspected suicide bomb attack in the island's capital on Friday, officials said. Two security force personnel were killed by the blast and 12 others were injured, officials said.  The president's office said Gothabaya was unhurt and it blamed the attack on a Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) suicide bomber. "After the explosion, he directly came to the president's office and hugged him," said Sudath Silva, President Rajapakse's official photographer. "The blood on his clothes was that of his security guards." The secretary's driver had earlier said he had suffered slight injuries. In a separate incident, residents said two soldiers were killed in an anti-personnel mine blast outside the main hospital in army-held Jaffna peninsula, which is cut off from the rest of the island by rebel lines. The attacks come just days after the Tigers' shadowy leader Velupillai Prabhakaran said the group was resuming their independence struggle, which analysts said means a new chapter in the island's two-decade civil war is likely to escalate. The Tigers denied involvement in the Colombo bombing, but few believe their routine denials. SUICIDE BOMBER DECAPITATED? A Reuters witness saw a headless body in the back of a civilian pickup truck at the scene of the blast and the wreckage of a three-wheeler taxi -- vehicles which have been used in previous bomb attacks blamed on the rebels. "That's the remains of the suicide bomber," said military spokesman Brigadier Prasad Samarasinghe. Two cars and a motorcycle caught in the blast lay on the road in flames. The government published photographs of the clearly relieved Rajapakse brothers hugging. "President Mahinda Rajapakse remains unshaken in his resolve to achieve peace in Sri Lanka and in his efforts to combat all forms of terrorism and violence," Rajapakse's office said in a statement (Full report in Washington Post)

Government expresses concern and condemnation over the cowardly attack on Defence Secretary - The Government of Sri Lanka expresses grave concern and condemnation over the cowardly unsuccessful attempt on the life of Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa this morning in Colombo. Although the police investigations on the incident are yet to conclude, the modus operandi of the suicide bomb attack has the hallmark of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) which has a long history of suicide bomb attacks on civilian and military targets. Two persons died and eight military personnel and 5 civilians were injured and the vehicle of the Defence Secretary was badly damaged. The GoSL condemns this dastardly attack in no uncertain terms and wishes to emphasise that a democratically elected government would not succumb to such terror tactics unleashed by the LTTE. The GoSL is totally committed to peace. However, it would not shirk its responsibilities towards the people of Sri Lanka and would not hesitate to take appropriate action to safeguard the people and the sovereignty of the State. The GoSL, while urging the LTTE to give up the path of terrorism and resume peace talks genuinely even at this late stage, seeks the cooperation of the international community to impress upon the LTTE the futility of terror tactics and the imperative need for resumption of peace talks to find a lasting political solution (Full report in Sri Lanka Defence Ministry).

Sri Lankan president's brother escapes assassination - Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse's brother narrowly escaped a suicide blast Friday morning, but one soldier was killed and 15 others were injured in the attack. The convoy of Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, the president's younger brother and the secretary of the defense ministry, came under attack at about 10:30 a.m. (0500 GMT) in downtown Colombo. Military spokesman Prasad Samarasinghe said the bomber from the rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) triggered the explosives as the convoy of vehicles was passing. The Media Center for National Security said in a statement that Gotabhaya "is reported to be un-hurt and safe." The body of the bomber who carried the attack on a three wheeler, was found at the scene, Samarasinghe said, adding that 10 soldiers and five civilians were also injured in the blast. Wreckage of two motorcycles, one three-wheeler and several other damaged vehicles scattered in the blast site, a major crossroads less than 1,000 meters from President Rajapakse's office. The attack came four days after a policy statement by the LTTE leader Velupillai Prabakaran saying the rebel group had no option but to resume its independence struggle to set up a separate homeland for the minority Tamil community in the north and east. The government has down played the rebel leader's comment stating that it was committed to the Norwegian backed ceasefire and the peace process (Full report in Peoples Daily).

The United States Condemns Suicide Attack - The US embassy in a press release condemned the suicide bomb attack carried out by the LTTE terrorists this morning in Colombo. The full text of the press release is as follows: The United States condemns strongly the terrorist attack this morning on the convoy of Defense Secretary Rajapakse. While we are gratified that Secretary Rajapakse is safe and well, the United States extends our sincere condolences to the families of those who were killed and wounded in this terrible incident. The attack bears all the hallmarks of an operation by the LTTE. We once again call on the LTTE to renounce terrorism, to give up violence and to join in negotiating a peaceful solution to Sri Lanka's conflict (Full report in Sri Lanka Defence Ministry).

Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapakse attacked by LTTE suicide unit - By Malathi Srikumaran in Colombo - LTTE agents in Colombo had launched a deadly suicide attack on Sri Lankan Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapakse this morning at 10.45AM near the Daramapala Rd, Piththala junction, Colombo 3. According to Tamil media sources, the Defence Secretary had escaped from the attacked while one person had succumbed to the injuries. 14 more civilians are also injured, according to sources from Colombo national hospital. When contacted, a government source claim that the Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapakse had not been severly harmed by the suicide attack. The suicide bomber had used a three-wheeler to approach Gotabhaya Rajapakse. However, the suicide attacker had not been successful to position sufficiently near Rajapakse to cause him severe bodily harm, military sources said. In the meantime there appears to be sharp differences in the Wanni leadership between the Prabhakaran and Thamilselvan factions which may be the real reason why a Special Envoy has rushed to Sri Lanka. Immediately on arrival in Collombo Jon Hanssen-Bauer met Minister Keheliya Rambukwella and was soon on his way to Kilinochchi. This would be the last thing the Norwegians would want to see happening in Wanni which is now inevitable (Full report in The Independent).

Sri Lanka: President’s brother escapes bomb blast unscathed - The Director of the Colombo National Hospital confirmed that Gotabaya Rajapakse was not among the injured admitted to hospital, though it was rumored that the brother of Mahinda Rajapaksa, President of Sri Lanka was injured in a bomb blast this morning at Piththala Junction at Dharmapala Mawatha in Kollupitiya, heart of the Colombo capital city of Sri Lanka. Also, Media Centre for National Security, reveals, "Whilst the vehicle in which the Defence Secretary traveled is damaged Mr. Rajapaksa is reported to be un-hurt and safe." Reports from the scene say that wreckages of two motorcycles and a three-wheeler are seen. Several other vehicles are also damaged due to the bomb blast. According to the Media Centre for National Security, a suicide bomber in three-wheeler had triggered an explosion at Piththala Junction. located at Dharmapala Mawatha, in Kollupitiya around 10.39 am this morning. The indented target of the suicide bomber was the vehicle convoy of Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Secretary of the Ministry of Defence, Public Security, Law and Order, Gotabhaya Rajapaksa. According to reports reaching "Asian Tribune," four persons were killed in this explosion and fourteen others have been immediately admitted to the Colombo National hospital with injuries. The body of the suspected suicide bomber is visible on a double cab vehicle in the vicinity of the incident, reports reveal. A three wheeler has been completely damaged and it is suspected that the bomb had been brought in the three wheeler. A VIP vehicle, a BMW, is seen damaged and a body severed off its head is seen near the vehicle (Full report in Asian Tribune).

Two Soldiers On Defence Secretary’s Escort Sacrifice Their Lives - COLOMBO: TWO SOLDIERS WHO SUFFERED fatal injuries in the LTTE suicide blast at KOLLUPITIYA, COLOMBO today (01) morning succumbed to injuries while being treated at National Hospital and Navaloka (Private) hospital, COLOMBO. Lance Corporal P.H.P. WIJERATHNE from Sri Lanka Amy Service Corps (SLASC) was riding alongside the Defence Secretary’s vehicle at the time of the incident. He was undergoing treatment at the Navaloka (Pvt) hospital. He was born at ARAWWALA, MAWATHAGAMA in KURUNEGALA in 1974 and received education at the MAWATHAGAMA, SAMODAYA M.M.V. On completion of G.C.E. Ordinary Level, young WIJERATHNE joined the Sri Lanka Army and, after initial training, was posted to SLASC. During the military career, he has served in operational areas and been awarded with service medals such as Riviresa Campaign Service Medal and Purna Bhumi Medal. Lance Corporal P.H.P. WIJERATHNE leaves his wife and one child. Lance Corporal N.K. PIYASIRI from the Gajaba Regiment, the driver of the escort Defender Jeep of the convoy, was admitted to National Hospital for urgent surgery after being critically injured. He later died at the National hospital ICU. Lance Corporal N.K. PIYASIRI of WARAKKANDENIYA NELUWA in GALLE, a product of BATUWANGALA school, was born at in 1975. After G.C.E. Ordinary Level, PIYASIRI joined the Sri Lanka Army in 1993 and was given training at AMPARA Combat Training School. He was awarded with Purna Bhumi and Desha putra service medals. According to latest reports, six soldiers and five civilians are receiving medical treatment at the National Hospital and three more soldiers at Navaloka hospitals (Full report in Sri Lanka Army)..

Secretary Defence Escapes LTTE Suicide Attack - COLOMBO: LTTE SUICIDE ATTACK targeting the Secretary Defence Mr. Gotabhaya Rajapaksa today (01) morning near the PITTALA junction, Colombo injured seven Army personnel on escort to the Secretary Defence and seven civilians around the location. They were rushed to the National Hospital Colombo with serious injuries. One soldier in critical condition was subjected to immediate surgery, according to hospital sources. Dead body of an unidentified person, believed to be the suicide cadre who rammed into the convoy was found from the scene. At least eight vehicles including the vehicle of Secretary Defence were badly damaged. However, the latest LTTE barbaric mission was foiled with their target, Mr. Gotabhaya Rajapaksa escaped unhurt. Immediately after the incident, he met President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the Temple Trees. Investigations conducted by Security Forces with assistance of the Police are continuing (Full report in Sri Lanka Army).

 


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