Patients able to are fleeing one of the last hospitals as artillery shells rain down on it. The Red Cross is in negotiations trying to evacuate the most severely wounded from Puthukkudiyiruppu hospital .
UNICEF’s Sarah Crowe told CNN on Monday that aid is getting into the war zone only every few days;
“We need open access,” she said. “These children and families need to be protected and they need to get out fast.” Hundreds of civilians, including children, have been wounding in fighting since the end of last week.
Last Thursday United Nation aid workers rescued 105 adults and 50 critically injured children from area hospitals.
The Tamil Tigers and government troops are battling it out in the streets of Colombo.
The Associated Press were handed pictures showing civilians killed and maimed on Monday. Photos of the plight of those trapped inside the conflict area rarely have outside media showing the destruction.
The government claims that it has captured the last airstrip of the Tamil Tigers in northeast of Piramatharukulam in Puthukkidiyiruppu on Tuesday. This will ground the guerrilla’s small air force and may hasten an end to the longest-running civil war in Asia. This conflict began in the 1970’s, the Tamil Tigers want a separate state for the Tamils. More than 70,000 people have died during the civil war.
SIFY News Reports:
“The target of the air raid was a LTTE radar centre and a commanding centre. The target was located 1.5 km north of the Mullaittivu lagoon. The air force confirms that the target was successfully engaged,” the Media Centre for National Security (MCNS) said.
The Tamil Tigers have been urged to stop the war by the United States, the European Union, Norway and Japan. The joint plea comes as up to 250,000 civilians struggle to remain alive trapped in the cross fire.
The BBC reports:
Both sides “should recognise that further loss of life – of civilians and combatants – will serve no cause”, the nations said.