9:14 PM

24 killed, 40 injured

Twenty four (24) passengers were killed and 40 others injured in the Piliyandala blast, the Police said. The injured are being treated at Piliyandala, Kalubowila and Colombo National hospitals.

6:55 PM

Explosion in Piliyandala

A bomb exploded inside a CTB bus at the Piliyandala bus stand a short while ago, the Police said.

3:24 PM

UNICEF Commends About TMVP

UNICEF today commended the release by the TMVP of 28 children from their ranks, characterizing it as a “very encouraging sign that the TMVP intends to comply with their national and international legal obligations.”

Speaking from Colombo, the head of the UN children’s agency in Sri Lanka, Philippe Duamelle, highlighted the important role played by the government in securing the second major release of children by the TMVP in just two weeks.

“We are beginning to significant progress from the TMVP,“ he said. “If the TMVP continues to release at this rate, and refrains from recruiting children, they will eventually conform with their public commitment to release all children. I hope that we will see a third major release shortly.”

2:21 PM

Stop LTTE's Euro Tv Test Transmission

The Tamil Tigers' test transmissions of its Euro television channel from Israel using the RR Sat of Tel Aviv for uplink facility has been stopped after two days of test transmission.

The Asian Tribune reported about this transmission earlier this week in the story titled 'LTTE's Euro Tv moves to Israel after blockade by France and Italy'.Koby Zontag, Director of Sales and Business Development, RRSat - Global Communications Network Ltd.(NASDAQ RRST), said that the Euro TV channel was brought to them by a 3rd party without disclosing its nature nor the organization behind it.

"We have broadcasted a slide with the channel name for less than 24 hours. As soon as we understood the nature of the channel we immediately took it off the satellite," he said."As your article damages our reputation we would appreciate if you will also publicize our above comment so it will be cleared that we have been mislead," he added.

Shlomi Izkovitz, Deputy VP Sales & Marketing, RRSat - Global Communications Network Ltd. (NASDAQ RRST) wrote to the Asian Tribune today that the company did not transmit the Euro Television channel.However, the international satellite information website www.mediaworldasia.dk has listed Euro Television among the Tamil channels on April 14, 2008 and stated that it was uplinked on 9 degree East as a test transmission.

Political analysts say that the European Union, the United States other countries that had proscribed the LTTE as a terrorist organization would welcome the RRSat decision to stop the test transmission of the Euro Tv.

12:08 PM

Army Liberates Sacred Madhu Shrine

Sri Lanka army has liberated the sacred Madhu shrine by beating off the occupying LTTE terrorists today morning (April 25). The soldiers of 8 Sri Lanka Light Infantry reached the shrine as the terrorists beat a retreat unable to withstand the army advance.

The centuries old Catholic shrine is held sacred and respected by all Sri Lankans irrespective of religion and ethnicity. Thousands of pilgrims used to visit the shrine, especially during the church feast in August, before the terrorists took control of the area in 1999.

As LTTE terrorists unleashed their "Final War" in 2006, the church became a sanctuary for thousands of civilians who wanted to avoid their children being conscripted by the terror outfit. Later, LTTE agents acting under religious fa‡ades, evicted these civilians and unashamedly made many of them to fall prey to the terrorists.

Gradually, the terrorists almost turned the shrine into a terror base by positioning its heavy guns around the church and using it as a barrack for its cadres. Though this desecration has been carried out for last few months the fact was kept secret from the general public until the sacred statue of Our Lady of Madhu was shifted two weeks ago.

Meanwhile, Army 57 division battling against the terrorists on the Vavuniya battle front, tactically removed most of the terrorists' lines of communication to what had then become the terror stronghold inside the Madhu complex, making the occupying terrorists isolated from the rest. Army specifically resorted to this slow and painstaking tactical measure in order to avoid any military operations within the Madhu "No War Zone". Many soldiers had to sacrifice their lives and limbs in this endeavour as they refrained from any retaliation to shells launched from the vicinity of the church complex.

The mode of operandi became a success as the terrorists started to withdraw amid the increasing military pressures outside the no war zone. The LTTE bands, "Malathi", "Radha" and "Charles Anthony" withdrew from the area after shifting their heavy guns. A small LTTE element lead by a terrorist leader "Gopith" was the last known terror group to remain at the church.

At present, army troops are clearing the surroundings of the church, as there is a strong possibility that the terrorists have booby-trapped the church building before they leave.