S Lankan Navy finds 14-yr-old wreckage of aircraft



Colombo: Sri Lankan Navy on Friday said that they had found the wreck of a passenger aircraft shot down by the LTTE some 14 years ago.

"On the request of the Terrorist Investigation Division (TID), Navy surveyed the sea bed off the Iranativu island in the northern sea and located some wreckages of a plane", Navy spokesman Kosala Warnakulasuriya said.

An AN-24 Russian-built passenger aircraft operated by privately-owned Lion Air, was believed to have been shot down by the LTTE on September 29, 1998.

It took off from the military airport at Palaly in the northern Jaffna peninsula with 48 passengers, six crew members and two Ukrainian pilots heading for Jaffna.

The plane went off the radar 10 minutes into take-off. All on board were killed in the crash.

LTTE shot down a series of Sri Lankan Airforce and civilian aircraft between 1995 and 1998.

PTI