10:21 PM

Capital of ELAM Country

Kilinochchi is now a 'ghost town' with the LTTE withdrawing all its offices, business establishments, hotels and media centres following the rapid advancement of the security forces towards the region from various directions in the Wanni, informed sources said. The LTTE had even abandoned its 'Peace Secretariat' and the adjoining buildings where most of the meetings with key figures of the international community had taken place with the LTTE's late political wing leader S. P. Thamilselvan and its late theoretician Anton Balasingham, sources said.

The 'Peace Secretariat' of the outfit built with several millions of rupees was equipped with the latest communication facilities. The Secretariat was also furnished to international standards and Pulithevan, one of the lieutenants of Thamilselvan was the head of the Secretariat. The buildings put up by the LTTE in Kilinochchi for its political activities were built soon after the Norway mediated Ceasefire Agreement was signed in February 2002, the sources said.

According to sources the Norwegians had also helped the outfit financially to construct its new buildings in Kilinochchi for political activities. As the civilians began to move out from Kilinochchi, police stations, court houses and other administrative centres that had been set up by the LTTE collapsed with the outfit's henchmen running helter skelter in the region, the sources said.

Meanwhile, innocent civilians in the region are between the 'devil and the deep blue sea' struggling to escape from the clutches of the LTTE who have made them scapegoats for their final show down with the security forces.

Civilians have now moved towards the eastern direction from Kilinochchi to areas such as Akkarayan, Viswamadu and Puthukudiyiruppu which are located east of the A-9 highway. With the LTTE forcibly preventing civilians moving into Government controlled cleared areas, they would face severe hardships in getting essential supplies when the battle enters its final phase, the sources said.