The military yesterday said the 512 Brigade - the main unit of the Sri Lanka Army stationed in Jaffna - would be relocated in the peninsula handing over the houses it occupied back to the civilians.
The brigade, which is in charge of operations in the peninsula had already handed over 18 of the 45 houses it occupied to relocate to the one acre land provided to the Army by the government.
Military spokesman Ruwan Wanigasuriya said the 45 houses used by the brigade were situated within a five acre land. “We were paying them rents since we took them over during the war,” he said.
“The rest of the houses will be handed back to the civilians within the next few months while the construction of new buildings and infrastructure for the brigade have already started,” Brigadier Wanigasuriya said.
The number of troops in the Jaffna Peninsula is now around 15,000, which is eight per cent of the operational strength of the Army.
At the beginning of the humanitarian operation, 30 percent or 50,000 of the operational strength of the Army was stationed in the peninsula.
The 51, 52 and the 55 divisions of the army with nearly 25 battalions are stationed in the Jaffna peninsula now under the leadership of Jaffna Security Forces Commander Major General Mahinda Hathurusinghe. (Supun Dias)