Sri Lanka seize toys aboard rebel boats

Oct 11, 2007 (AFP) – Sri Lanka’s navy Thursday seized two suspected Tamil Tiger boats, confiscating satellite phones and remote-controlled toys which officials say can be used to trigger bombs, the defence ministry said. The rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) abandoned the vessels in shallow waters when challenged by the Sri Lankan navy off the northwestern coastal peninsula of Mannar, the ministry said.

Authorities confiscated a radio-controlled toy plane and helicopter, four satellite phones, antennas and printed circuit boards, the ministry said.

Security forces have stepped up patrols in the region following the LTTE’s use of light aircraft to bomb military and civilian installations in March and April. There was no immediate comment from the LTTE, who have been fighting for a separate state for minority Tamils since 1972.