Ultras 'sneaking into' Manipur, Jaishankar cautions Myanmar : The Tribune India

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Ultras 'sneaking into' Manipur, Jaishankar cautions Myanmar

EAM wants drug, human trafficking issues tackled too

Ultras 'sneaking into' Manipur, Jaishankar cautions Myanmar

S Jaishankar with his Myanmar counterpart Than Swe in Bangkok. PTI



Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 16

Amid reports of heavily armed militants crossing over from Myanmar during the Kuki-Meitei clashes in Manipur, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Sunday met his Myanmar counterpart Than Swe and flagged the disturbance of peace on their common border.

Jaishankar underlined the importance of ensuring peace and stability in the border areas and said these had been “seriously disturbed recently and any actions that aggravate the situation should be avoided”. “Flagged concerns about human and drug trafficking. Urged stronger cooperation among relevant parties for the early return of trafficked victims,” he said. As an immediate neighbour, India is concerned about the humanitarian situation in Myanmar, Jaishankar said. “India supports the democratic transition process in Myanmar and highlights the need for return of peace and stability. We will closely coordinate our policy with ASEAN in this regard,” he added.

Border unrest taken up

  • There are reports of heavily armed militants entering strife-torn Manipur
  • Disturbed conditions in Myanmar have been allowing militants to sneak into India
  • Due to this, the 1,400-km India-Myanmar-Thailand highway is four years behind deadline

Disturbed conditions in Myanmar not only allow militants to cross over into India, but have also affected the India-Myanmar-Thailand trilateral highway, which is now nearly four years behind the deadline. The 1,400-km-long highway will give a boost to trade, business, health, education and tourism ties among the three countries. There are plans to extend it to Vietnam as well.

India and Myanmar have substantially stepped up security cooperation. One highlight was the 2019 three-week operation in their respective territories that led to the busting of several north-east-based militant camps. This went up a notch in 2020 when a special plane from Myanmar dropped 12 wanted militants in Imphal and 10 in Guwahati. In 2021, Myanmar handed over five Manipur militants wanted in the killing of a commanding officer of an Army battalion and his wife in Churachandpur.

After meeting Thai Foreign Minister Don Pramudwinai, Jaishankar said the problems facing the trilateral highway project would also be discussed at the Mekong Ganga Cooperation (MGC) meeting. Jaishankar is in Bangkok to participate in the “12th Foreign Ministers’ Meeting of the Mekong Ganga Cooperation Mechanism” and attend the “BIMSTEC Foreign Ministers’ Retreat”.

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