India, Myanmar say states backing terror should be held to account

New Delhi, Oct 19 (IANS) India and Myanmar on Wednesday said that the fight against terrorism should target terrorists, and hold to account terror organisations and states that encourage, support or finance terrorism in any way.

The joint statement issued after delegation level talks between Myanmar’s State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and Prime Minister Narendra Modi made reference to last month’s terror attack in Uri in Jammu and Kashmir that killed 19 Indian soldiers.

Suu Kyi condemned the Uri terror attack and conveyed her deep condolences to the loved ones of those who lost their lives. Modi condemned the recent armed attacks against three border posts in the northern part of Rakhine state in Myanmar and expressed his profound sympathy for the families of the policemen killed in the attacks.

The two sides called for the expeditious finalisation of the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism at present being negotiated in the United Nations.

“Both sides condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations as well as all acts, methods and practices of terrorism wherever, by whomever, against whomsoever committed, and agreed that the fight against terrorism should target terrorists, hold to account terror organisations, networks and also states that encourage, support or finance terrorism in any way,” the statement said.

The two sides also agreed on further coordination between the respective border guarding forces and shared the view that the long-standing commitment of not allowing insurgent groups to use their soil for hostile activities against the other side was essential for the prosperity of the people residing along the border.

India and Myanmar also agreed to coordinate, through diplomatic channels, the setting up of immigration facilities at the Tamu-Moreh and Rhi-Zowkhathar border crossing points for enabling and facilitating regulated and easy movement of people across the land borders for business, tourism and other purposes.

The statement said that terrorism was “first and foremost a violation of human rights and that there can be no justification for extending support, financing, provision of material resources or training to terrorists who destroy innocent lives”.

Observing that maintenance of security was essential for the socio-economic development of border areas, both sides underlined their mutual respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity, and reaffirmed their shared commitment to fight insurgent activity and the scourge of terrorism in all its forms and manifestations.

“Both sides expressed their mutual respect for the already-demarcated boundary between the two countries, and stressed the need to resolve outstanding boundary demarcation issues as soon as possible through existing mechanisms,” the statement said.

Both sides also agreed on the need for close cooperation on the development of ocean-based Blue Economy and Maritime Cooperation in the Bay of Bengal.

The two nations also agreed to hold early meetings of the Joint Trade Committee (JTC), Joint Working Groups on Border Trade and Border Haats, and on Railways and Shipping.

Myanmar reiterated its support for India’s bid to become a permanent member in an expanded and reformed UN Security Council.

The statement said that India has agreed to support Myanmar in creating police training infrastructure and to provide more diplomatic trainings related to the capacity building of Myanmar Foreign Service officers.

The statement said that Modi accepted the invitation by Suu Kyi to visit Myanmar.



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