2nd Batch of Sick and Wounded Tamil Civilians trapped in Mullaithivu evacuated under Naval Escort
The second batch of 403 sick and wounded Tamil civilians was evacuated under the Naval escort on Thursday, 12th February 2009. Sri Lanka Navy assisted in the evacuation of the first batch consisting of 356 persons on Tuesday 10th February. The evacuation of sick and wounded Tamil civilians trapped in LTTE Clutches in the un-cleared areas in Mullaithivu is being carried out on board “MV Green Ocean” under the ICRC flag. The Navy has provided safe passage to the patients for urgent medical treatment in Tricomalee Government hospital.
The evacuees, upon disembarkation, were provided with emergency medical treatment by Naval doctors and were rushed to the hospitals by the naval personnel for further treatment. Elaborate arrangements have been made to treat the sick and the injured evacuees once they reach cleared areas. Hospitals have been equipped with adequate stocks of essential drugs and specialist medical personnel are assigned to treat the sick and the wounded as they are transferred to hospitals.
The second batch consisted of 140 males, 154 females and 109 children. So far, the Navy has rendered assistance to a totality of 759 patients. The evacuees had been languishing in pain and fear due to the LTTE’s adamant stance to hold all civilians captive in the un-cleared areas as human shields despite the repeated appeals by the International Community to free all civilians to arrive in safe areas immediately.
The Navy, as part of its humanitarian operations, has put in place a number of comprehensive evacuation measures to facilitate the evacuation process. Naval personnel and vessels along with stand-by rescue and medical teams are on special deployment in the North-eastern seas for assisting Tamil civilians fleeing from LTTE clutches.