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Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Four Mekong countries start river patrols

Mekong River

Yangon January 27

Chinese and Lao ships started guarding Mekong waters on 26 of this month in their first round of joint patrols for the year 2016 in which Myanmar and Thailand are other participants.

Lawmen from four countries – Myanmar, China, Laos and Thailand -- sharing the Mekong basin will do the job of securing Mekong river passage and curbing crimes such as human trafficking, gunrunning and drug smuggling that are frequent in the Golden Triangle region where the remote part of river flows through.

The first round of patrol ships left Guanlei Port in Xishuangbanna autonomous prefecture in the southwest Yunnan Province in China at 8 am. The four-day patrol includes eight river-guard ships -- five Chinese ships and three Lao ships.

Since 2011 joint river guarding force has been launched for 42 rounds. The joint patrol program started in December that year in taking safety measures as fears rose after a gang hijacked two cargo ships in Thai waters two months earlier in which 13 Chinese sailors were killed.

The Myawady Daily

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