Sri Lanka troops find three suicide jackets following blast

Feb 29, 2008 (AFP) – A Tamil Tiger suicide bomber blew himself up on Friday injuring seven people as police moved in to search his house in the Sri Lankan capital, police and military officials said. Casualty figures provided by both sides differ vastly and cannot be independently verified. The government bars journalists and human rights workers from front line and rebel-held areas.

The blast went off when police and soldiers approached the house in Colombo’s commercial district of Kotahena, a police official said.

At least three of the injured were police officers, hospital staff said.

“We had information from a man we arrested the previous day about a possible arms storage location of the Tigers and we moved in this morning to check,” a policeman at the scene said.

He said that they had found several hand grenades and three jackets filled with explosives to be worn by suicide bombers.

Following the blast, police and troops poured into the area to search for further explosives caches and other suspected Tiger rebels.

“The man came out of a house while the search operation was underway and detonated explosives he was carrying,” military spokesman Udaya Nanayakkara said.