Sri Lankan President to address nation at 6 pm

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Colombo, May 18 (ANI): Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa will address the nation today at 6 pm after the Lankan Army declared victory in his nation's over quarter of a century civil war with the Tamil Tigers rebels.

Earlier in the day, the Sri Lankan Army claimed that Liberation of Tamil Ealam (LTTE) chief Velupillai Prabhakaran was shot dead by Sri Lankan Special Forces, as he tried to stage a dramatic breakout from an army encirclement.

Prabhakaran's respected death comes shortly after soldiers stumbled upon the bodies of several key LTTE leaders, including his son Charles Anthony, who headed the group's IT wing and was being groomed to take over his father's mantle.

The deaths sparked frenzied celebrations in the capital Colombo and large parts of the Sinhalese populated central and southern provinces as people poured out of their homes, waved national flags and distributed sweets.

Prabhakaran founded the LTTE in 1976 and built it into an awesome military machine that at one point controlled a third of Sri Lanka's land territory and two-thirds of its coastline. (ANI)

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