Sunday, December 20, 2009

All restrictions on A9 highway lifted

The government has lifted all restrictions imposed on civilian travel on the A9 street enabling citizens to travel freely to and from Jaffna and additional parts of the country.
"Any citizen can now journey on the A9 Road using either private transport or public transport with no restrictions whatsoever," Senior Presidential Advisor, M.P. and Chairman of the Presidential Task Force for Northern Development Basil Rajapaksa said.
Accordingly civilians can travel to and from Vavuniya and Jaffna between 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. With the forthcoming Christmas and New Year holidays people could visit their relations in Jaffna, Rajapaksa said.On a special instruction from President Mahinda Rajapaksa the A9 Road was opened for the community on November 13, enabling the transport of merchandise to and from Jaffna. Initially travel was allowed on a special permits issued by the Ministry of Defence, Law and Order. With improvements in newly liberated areas the Government tranquil the limits imposed on civilians.
On March 02, 2009, almost after 24 years, the Government officially re-opened the A9 Road to convey services of Security armed forces. Even though the 2002 truce provided for unarmed troop transport through the LTTE-dominated areas on the A9 Road, the Government and the safety Forces decided not to use that ability considering the risks involved. though with the complete liberation of the A9 Road and the North, the Sri Lanka Army is now able to securely transport unarmed and transport weapons men as well as material via A9 road passing Medawachchiya.
The A9 Road was for the time being opened following the Ceasefire agreement but the LTTE maintained road barriers and checkpoints and charged high duty from the public who used the road. The road was completely closed in August 2006 due to LTTE attacks.
Courtesy : Sunday Observer

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