[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index
Slorc claims it can wipe out pill p
Subject: Slorc claims it can wipe out pill plants
Bangkok Post July 10th
Slorc claims it can wipe out pill plants
Minister says border needs development
Burma claims it can eradicate narcotics plants in five years with
international help in developing border areas inhabited mostly by ethnic
Minister for Progress of Border Areas and National Races and Development
Affairs Maung Tin said amphetamine production, a recent Thai import,
could also be halted with help from Thailand and Laos.
The minister, in Bangkok for the second ministerial meeting on drug
cooperation in the Mekong region tomorrow, said Rangoon has spent $385
million and 6.5 billion kyats since 1989 on development projects to wipe
out opium and marijuana cultivation.
Since the first amphetamine plants were set up along the Burmese-Thai
border last year, Rangoon has seized nine million tablets, he said.
He denied the State Law and Order Restoration Council condoned drug
trafficking and harboured drug warlords. "The truth is the truth, we
don't have to explain ourselves," he said.
"Khun Sa has given up drug trafficking and we have also received
assurances from leaders of all ethnic groups that they will give it up
and persuade their people to do the same," he said.
He admitted though that in some areas, people could still not give up
their old habits because of poverty. "But the policy is clear to
eradicate narcotics plants nationwide," he said.
U Maung Tin cited the Mongla region, east of Kengtung in Shan State,
which was declared an opium-free zone in March at the end of a six-year
eradication plan, as an example of his government's commitment.
"We will establish more opium-free zones," he said. "Our next target
areas are in the Wa and Kokang region."
The areas, also in Shan State, bordering China, are known as the two
most fertile grounds for opium cultivation in Southeast Asia.
The United Nations International Drug Control Programme and the
government are hosting the ministerial meeting. Burma, China, Laos and
Thailand signed a memorandum of understanding to cooperate against drugs
in 1993. They were joined two years later by Cambodia and Vietnam.
"THERE WILL BE NO REAL DEMOCRACY IF WE CAN'T GURANTEE THE RIGHTS OF THE
MINORITY ETHNIC PEOPLE. ONLY UNDERSTANDING THEIR SUFFERING AND HELPING
THEM TO EXERCISE THEIR RIGHTS WILL ASSIST PREVENTING FROM THE
DISINTEGRATION AND THE SESESSION." "WITHOUT UNDERSTANDING THEIR
STRENGTH, WE CAN'T TOPPLE THE SLORC AND BURMA WILL NEVER BE IN PEACE."
Get Private Web-Based Email Free http://www.hotmail.com