Colombo: The Sri Lankan Army plans to
deploy 400 more engineering troops to hasten the demining
process in Wanni region to enable the early resettlement of
displaced Tamil civilians.
"I have already sent 400 engineering troops for
demining and I am sending more battalions to be trained in
`humanitarian demining`," Sri Lankan Army chief Lieutenant
General Jagath Jayasuriya told reporters here today.
Jayasuriya who was attending a ceremony at the
Armoured Corp headquarters here said the army did not have a
"precise" estimate of the number of mines planted by the LTTE
during its 35-year-old civil war against the Lankan
The troops, however, had come across several mines
during the final phase of battle which ended with the killing
of rebel supremo Velupillai Prabhakaran on May 17 this year.
Jayasuriya, who was appointed in July, said he was
also planning to deploy heavy equipment to clear mine-fields
in the region where the final battle was fought with the LTTE.
Four international NGOs, that includes deminers from
India, are currently involved in clearing operations to enable
settlement of more than 2,80,000 people staying at
rehabilitation camps in northern Vavuniya district.
The army was also holding discussions for bringing in
deminers from Australia, he said.