Iranamadu Airport

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Iranamadu Airport

இரணைமடு விமான நிலையம்
ඉරණමඩුව ගුවන්තොටුපළ
Summary
Airport typeMilitary/Public
OwnerGovernment of Sri Lanka
OperatorSri Lanka Air Force
ServesKilinochchi
LocationIranamadu, Sri Lanka
Built2003
In use2003 - 2009,
2011 - present
CommanderM. M. T. C. Manamperi
Coordinates09°18′19.60″N 80°29′15.40″E / 9.3054444°N 80.4876111°E / 9.3054444; 80.4876111Coordinates: 09°18′19.60″N 80°29′15.40″E / 9.3054444°N 80.4876111°E / 9.3054444; 80.4876111
Map
Iranamadu Airport is located in Northern Province
Iranamadu Airport
Iranamadu Airport
Location in Northern Province
Runways
Direction Length Surface
m ft
05/23 1,500 4,900 Asphalt

Iranamadu Airport (Tamil: இரணைமடு விமான நிலையம், romanized: Iraṇaimaṭu Vimāṉa Nilaiyam, Sinhala: ඉරණමඩුව ගුවන්තොටුපළ, romanized: Iraṇamaḍuva Guvantoṭupaḷa) is an air force station and domestic airport in Iranamadu in northern Sri Lanka. Located approximately 9.5 km (5.9 mi) south east of the town of Kilinochchi, the airport is also known as Kilinochchi Airport and SLAF Iranamadu. Originally built by the rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam in 2003, it was captured by the Sri Lankan military in 2009 and taken over by the Sri Lanka Air Force.

History[edit]

The rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam first built an airstrip in Iranamadu in the early 1990s. In 1993 they started clearing land south east of the Iranamadu Tank and over the next two years constructed a runway which was opened by LTTE leader V. Prabhakaran on 19 March 1995.[1] The runway was then bombed and destroyed by the Sri Lanka Air Force.[1][2] In late 2003, during the Norwegian facilitated ceasefire, the LTTE started clearing land at another site, east of Iranamadu Tank.[1] Within a year the LTTE had built a 1,200 m (3,900 ft) runway.[1] The air force bombed the airstrip several times, indulging in June 2006 after the Kebithigollewa massacre.[3] The airstrip was the launchpad for a number of Air Tigers attacks including the raid on Anuradhapura Air Force Base in October 2007.[4] The Sri Lankan military captured the airstrip on 15 January 2009.[5][6]

A Sri Lanka Air Force detachment moved onto the site on 21 June 2009.[7][8] The airstrip became an air station on 3 August 2011.[9] The airstrip was reconstructed in 2011 and opened for light aircraft.[10][11] The airstrip was then converted into an airport with a 1,500 m (4,900 ft) runway capable of handling the air force's Lockheed C-130 Hercules and Antonov An-32 aircraft.[12][13] The new airport was officially opened by President Mahinda Rajapaksa, becoming the country's 16th domestic airport.[14]

Airlines and destinations[edit]

AirlinesDestinations
Helitours Colombo-Ratmalana

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Athas, Iqbal (27 March 2005). "Air Force report shows it all". The Sunday Times (Sri Lanka).
  2. ^ "Air Tigers acquired a twin-engine aircraft before Tsunami". The Island (Sri Lanka). 3 April 2005.
  3. ^ Athas, Iqbal (18 June 2006). "A full-scale war about to begin". The Sunday Times (Sri Lanka).
  4. ^ Ferdinando, Shamindra (16 June 2013). "Vanni east landscape transformed with new airfield, major SLAF station". The Island (Sri Lanka).
  5. ^ Hariharan, R. (23 January 2009). "Looks like Prabakaran's last battle". The Island (Sri Lanka).
  6. ^ Berenger, Leon (18 January 2009). "Armed forces poised to take last bastion of LTTE". The Sunday Times (Sri Lanka).
  7. ^ "SLAF Iranamadu base completes one year SLAF Iranamadu base completes one year". adaderana.lk. 11 June 2010.
  8. ^ Weerakoon, Gagani (16 June 2013). "The jungle airstrip". Ceylon Today.
  9. ^ Nathaniel, Camelia (2 February 2013). "Conquering another frontier". Ceylon Today.
  10. ^ "President opens SL's 16th domestic airport in Iranamadu". Ceylon Today. 17 June 2013.
  11. ^ "The reconstructed Iranamadu airstrip declared open by President Mahinda Rajapaksa". Asian Tribune. 16 June 2013.
  12. ^ "Video: Iranamadu Air strip opened". The Daily Mirror (Sri Lanka). 15 June 2013.
  13. ^ "Expanded Iranamadu Airstrip Opens". The Sunday Leader. 15 June 2013.
  14. ^ "President opens Iranamadu airstrip". Daily FT. 17 June 2013.

External links[edit]