Indian forces can enter Myanmar chasing terrorists

Monday, December 20, 2010

AIZAWL - Indian security forces can enter Myanmar to hunt for terrorists after taking due permission from Myanmarese authorities, it was decided here Monday.

And to boost their crackdown on Indian separatists hiding in Myanmar, it was also decided that Myanmarese security officials have promised to learn English or Hindi to overcome communication problems.

The decisions to curb trans-border movement of terrorists, arms smuggling and prevent drug trafficking came at a meeting of officers from the Indian home ministry and Myanmar’s Chin state.

Both sides agreed to improve border security and share information on cross-border terrorism, a Mizoram home department official said.

The meeting took place in eastern Mizoram’s Champhai town Friday.

The official said: “Myanmar authorities have agreed to allow Indian security forces to enter Myanmar territory along the border after getting permission from the (local) army post commander.”

The Indian delegation was led by home ministry’s joint secretary S. Singh and the Myanmar officials headed by U. Nay Wing, the army commander of Chin state.

According to Indian officials, several militants from the northeast have taken shelter in Myanmar and Bangladesh and have set up bases and training camps.

“After the Bangladesh crackdown against northeast militants, many Indian guerrillas took shelter in the jungles and hills of Myanmar,” a Border Security Force (BSF) official said.

The official said that though Mizoram was the only state in the region free of separatist activities, militants from other states occasionally used its borders for safe passage.

The next meeting of the border liaison officers will be held in Myanmar in April 2011 to review the progress of the joint action.

Mizoram has a 404-km border with Myanmar and a 318-km border with Bangladesh.

Four Indian states - Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Manipur and Mizoram - share the 1,640-km border with Myanmar manned by Assam Rifles. The dense forests in most parts make the border porous and highly vulnerable.

Filed under: Terrorism

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