By Supun Dias
The army is using some of the functional weapons recovered during search operation in the North and East, the military said today. Colonel Duminda Gamage of the Army Media Directorate said the Ministry of Defence would decide on whether the rest of the weapons would be sold or handed to the army.
“With Ministry of Defence (MOD) approval, weapons which are functional were handed over to the army,” Colonel Gamage said.
He said there were three types of weapons recovered by the security forces - weapons with extensive and minimum damages, and those that were outdated. “We send the recovered weapons to the Central Armory. They decide what should be kept in reserve and what should be dismantled,” he said.
So far the military has recovered hundreds of thousands of weapons hidden by the LTTE from the North and East. Meanwhile, security forces recovered a massive haul of weapons including eighty 60 mm mortar bombs during a search operation carried out at Iranamadu in Killinochchi and Mulliyaweli on Sunday evening.
The weapons included six 60 mm mortar cartridges, fifteen 60 mm mortar fuses, 14 Rocket Propelled Grenades (RPG), one RPG launcher, one RPG body part, twenty-eight 81 mm mortar bombs, two claymore mines, two T-56 weapon body parts, one 120 mm mortar bomb and two T-56 assault rifles were also recovered during the search operation.
The operations were conducted after information was gathered from military intelligence units and on information provided by the State Intelligence Service (SIS).
De-mining groups recovered 254 anti personnel mines, one Arul bomb and one hand grenade from Mahilankulam, Piramanalankulam and Iranalipaikulam the same day.
A large number of arms and ammunition hidden underground by the LTTE in the Northern and Eastern Provinces were recovered by the armed forces and the Special Task Force (STF) since the conflict ended in May last year.
Security forces are continuing their search operations especially in the two provinces which were once strongholds of the LTTE.