Colombo: The LTTE had built submersible
vessels and a long secret channel for launching underwater
craft with the help of some Japanese experts who came to Sri
Lanka for tsunami relief work, a media report claimed today.
"A group of Japanese experts, who had been given access
to the LTTE-held area shortly after tsunami in December 2004,
had helped the rebels to build a channel to launch underwater
craft," the Island newspaper claimed citing confession of a
detained Tamil Tiger.
It said the Japanese team had also helped the rebels
develop submersibles, though the first trial of the craft
was not successful.
The foreigners had worked on the tunnel project for some
time in a high-security zone in the Puthukudirippu area in the
north, the newspaper quoted "well-informed sources" as saying.
Though the 58 Division of the Army had found a 360-ft
long and 25-ft wide tunnel and a 300-ft long and 30-ft deep
dock in early May, "the involvement of Japanese experts in
this project had not come to light until recently," it said.
Sources said the troops had captured the tunnel in the
Irattavaikkal three weeks before the army finished off the
LTTE leadership on the banks of Nanthikadal lagoon on May 19.
The LTTE planned to float the submersible from the dock
to the sea through the camouflaged tunnel, the newspaper said.
The sources said the LTTE could have used the same technique
to take in a submersible.