Three obituary posters found by troops operating in the Mannar battlefront have revealed details of 150 LTTE cadres, including more than 20 child soldiers, killed in one month. According to defence sources, the posters were found on a billboard at a recently captured office of an LTTE regional leader in the Karakakulam area. The three posters contain details of 50 LTTE cadres on each, including their name, rank and the unit that they had been attached to. However, no ranks were mentioned against 30 cadres who appear very young in their early or mid-teens. According to the details mentioned on the posters, the LTTE cadres were killed at various locations in the Jaffnaand Wanni theatre of operations from 17th February to 10th March this year. A defence intelligence official speaking to defence.lk said that many of the LTTE cadres on the poster must have been those forcibly led into the battle by the terrorist leadership. “The pictures of teenagers and children show the LTTE is still using child soldiers despite its attempts to cover up the existence of its shameful baby brigade”, he said. “There were pictures of 5 self-styled “Lieutenant Colonels”, 9 “Majors”, 14 “Captains”, 51 “Lieutenants”, 41 “Second Lieutenants” and 30 others without any rank, on the posters”, he added. Speaking further he said the idea behind the posters might have been to convince the parents of those killed that their children had been given very high status or rank in the terror outfit. “It is a well known fact that LTTE is forcibly taking young children from their parents to be trained as terrorists. So, aggrieved parents are now rallying against the LTTE leadership in the Wanni for robbing their loved ones from them”, he added. Earlier, reports declared by the UNICEF have accused the outfit of recruiting over 2000 children to its ranks through coercion campaigns carried out in the non-liberated areas.
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