LTTE leadership wiped out

Last Updated: Mon, May 18, 2009 12:21 hrs

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Colombo: Sri Lanka's military declared a final victory Monday in its decades-old conflict with the Tamil Tigers, with the rebel outfit's entire leadership wiped out.

Following are brief profiles of the top rebels killed in the final battle:

Velupillai Prabhakaran:

The founder and leader of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), Prabhakaran has been living underground since 1972 and built up what was once considered one of the world's most disciplined rebel outfits.

He was killed while trying to make a last dash for freedom through government lines in a two-vehicle convoy, but was ambushed by army commandos, according to the army.

Colonel Soosai:

The leader of the Sea Tigers, the LTTE's naval wing, Soosai was considered to be among Prabhakaran's top military strategists -- responsible for planning suicide attacks using boats and scuba divers, as well as ensuring the arrival of smuggled weapons by speedboat.

He was killed along with his leader.

Pottu Amman:

The LTTE's ruthless intelligence chief, Amman was seen as another top rebel military planner -- looking for potential targets for suicide bombers, among them presidents, generals and ministers, and identifying and eliminating any dissent within the organisation. He was also wanted by India in connection with the 1991 assassination of former Indian premier Rajiv Gandhi.

He was reported killed during Prabhakaran's last desperate escape bid.

Charles Anthony:

Prabhakaran's 24-year-old son and the head of the LTTE's information technology wing. It was widely believed that he was being groomed to take over the leadership of the rebel outfit in the event of his father's death. His body was found in a patch of jungle where the rebels made their last stand.

B. Nadesan:

The LTTE's political wing leader, Nadesan was a former head of the Tigers' police force. He was named as political chief in 2007 following the death of S.P. Thamilselvan, a pro-peace talks moderate who was killed in a government air raid.

Nadesan was also reported to have died in the final showdown with government forces, along with his wife.

S. Pulideevan

Head of the LTTE's defunct Peace Secretariat, Pulideevan was for many years the public and moderate face of the ruthless rebel outfit, responsible for dealing with the press, humanitarian aid agencies and foreign diplomats involved in peace efforts.

In the hours before his death along with the last group of LTTE fighters and leaders, Pulideevan was said to have been making frantic calls on a satellite telephone with appeals to be evacuated by the Red Cross or United Nations.