Relief by sea
*No food shortage in Mullaitivu
*Mobile school for displaced children
The Government yesterday dispatched 40 metric tons of essential
relief items to the trapped civilians in Mullaitivu on the direction of
President Mahinda Rajapaksa. The consignment was dispatched through the
Addressing the media yesterday at the Information Department,
Resettlement and Disaster Relief Services Minister Rishard Bathiudeen
said a meeting was held at the Presidential Secretariat presided by
President Mahinda Rajapaksa and attended by Senior Presidential Advisor
MP Basil Rajapaksa to decide on relief supplies to the stranded
civilians in Mullaitivu.
As a result of the meeting 40 mt of essential food items were
released to the trapped civilians in Mullaitivu.
“Following a prompt directive by President Rajapaksa, a vessel
carrying 40 metric tons of essential food items for trapped civilians in
Mullaitivu left the Trincomalee harbour today.” This is the first time
relief items were ferried to Mullaitivu via the sea,” he added.
He observed the decision to transport food items via sea was due to
the security factors.
Relief items were transported over land routes in the past but the
situation has changed.
The LTTE has placed land mines and booby traps on these land routes
and it is unsafe to take the land routes for the time being.
“Under the present circumstances it was decided to send the relief
items to Mullaitivu by sea,” he said.
Minister Bathiudeen reiterated that strengthening the health sector
also was part of the discussion. A medical team deployed from the south
is assisting the medical officials in Mullaitivu.
“We sent medicine on the request of the medical officials in the
Mullaitivu. We also invite the doctors who wish to serve in the conflict
area to avail of their service.
The vessel ferrying essential food items on return will bring the
sick and the wounded civilians.
He said over 30,000 civilians fleeing from the LTTE who arrived in
the safe zone had been resettled at 13 IDP centres in Vavuniya. “The
Government is always looking after their grievances and attending to all
Minister Bathiudeen noted that a mobile school is to be established
at the IDP centre to continue education of 1,200 students of the College
of Education. There are 35 teachers among the displaced civilians.
Resettlement and Disaster Relief Services Minister Bathiudeen,
Sabaragamuwa Province Chief Minister Mahipala Herath, Essential Services
Commissioner S. P. Divaratne, High Command of Security personnel and the
ICRC representative participated at the discussion held at the