Practice Relating to Rule 39. Use of Cultural Property for Military Purposes
In 2011, in its Humanitarian Operation Factual Analysis July 2006 – May 2009, Sri Lanka’s Ministry of Defence stated:
162. While the Humanitarian Operation in the East was reaching its climax, it was decided to open a frontage in the Wanni theatre. …
169. The recapture of Madhu on 24 April 2008 was considered the first major objective liberated during the Wanni operation due to its significance for Sri Lankan Roman Catholics. The LTTE [Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam] had built bunkers around the church and launched artillery attacks from the premises. It also used the church premises to treat its wounded cadres.
The Ministry of Defence further stated: “On 18 May 2009, Sri Lanka defeated the LTTE, bringing to an end three decades of conflict and suffering.”