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A Brigadier and three Lieutenant Colonels involved in the controversial Weliweriya incident were relieved from their posts by the Army Chief to facilitate further inquiries, Sri Lanka Army said today.

The Brigadier, who was the Area Commander, and the three Lieutenant Colonels, in charge of divisions, have been sent to the regiment centers, Military Spokesperson, Brigadier Ruwan Wanigasooriya said.

Army Commander Lieut. Gen. Daya Ratnayake has also ordered an investigation into evidence to determine whether they are adequate for a Court Martial hearing against the officers in question.

In addition to this the Army Commander has also decided to appoint a board, comprising high-ranking officers, for recommendations to prevent such incidents from taking place in the future, the spokesman said.

The army had come under pressure after soldiers fired on unarmed locals on August 1 in Weliweriya, killing three and injuring several others, as they protested against a factory which they say polluted their ground water.

Apart from opposition parties and rights groups, the US and the European Union have condemned the August 1 shooting and called for a speedy civilian inquiry to prosecute those responsible.

The Sri Lanka Armyt had named a five-member board of inquiry to probe the allegations against the troops.