LTTE thermobaric weapon found

The police and army in a search operation in the north have recovered an LTTE thermobaric weapon, the military said.

According to the Army the weapon was among several other military hardware recovered on Tuesday in Maruthankerny, Irattaperiyakulam, Ramanoor, Nallur and Puthukuiyiruppu.

A thermobaric weapon, which includes the type known as a “fuel-air bomb”, is an explosive weapon that produces a blast wave of a significantly longer duration than those produced by condensed explosives. This is useful in military applications where its longer duration increases the numbers of casualties and causes more damage to structures.

In 2009 the then Foreign Secretary Dr. Palitha Kohona had said that the government had found evidence that the LTTE was seeking to buy thermobaric weapons from the international market.

The government also claimed at the time to have found an arms cache that included two thermobaric launchers.