‘China helps NE groups with arms’
National security advisor Shiv Shanker Menon has backed Intelligence Bureau director Nehchal Sandhu's view that Beijing was dabbling with north-east insurgent groups in India by helping them with weapon supplies and bases in its Yunan province. Menon briefed on Chinese assertive behavior in the north-east to all top police officers who assembled here for a security conference behind closed doors on Friday.
Government sources said China's unhealthy interest in India's north-east has been taken up with Beijing both diplomatically as well as through the aegis of counter-terror cooperation. However, China has denied giving any help to insurgent groups, particularly the ULFA, UNLF, NSCN (I-M) and PLA.
Officials said that arrested UNLF leader R K Meghan told his Indian interrogators that he met ULFA leader Paresh Barua at the Shanghai Expo in China last year for weapon supplies and training. Barua, the ULFA commander-in-chief, is said to be based in Yunan with New Delhi even providing details about his movement from Dhaka to South China. “We passed details to China about Barua's flight number from Dhaka, his date of travel and his passport number towards the end of 2010....but the Chinese flatly denied giving any support to the ULFA,” said a home ministry official.
That Beijing was fishing in troubled waters in north-east was clear from the interrogation of NSCN (I-M) chief weapons procurer Anthony Shimray, who was arrested last October 2. Shimray, who was in touch with Chinese intelligence, disclosed that he had paid US $800,000 to a Bangkok-based company last April to source rocket launchers, rifles, grenades and pistols for the I-M group and its affiliates in Manipur and Assam. The remaining payment of US $ 200,000 was to be made after the consignment was delivered through the Bangladesh route.
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