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Nov 19, 2019-Tuesday



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Tuesday, Nov 19, 2019

PM Modi meets Myanmar’s State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi

Prime Minster Narendra Modi is on a two-day visit to the neighbouring country of Myanmar.

india Updated: Sep 06, 2017 10:04 IST
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India, Nay Pyi Taw
Prime Minister Narendra Modi with State Counsellor of Myanmar Aung San Suu Kyi  on September 6.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi with State Counsellor of Myanmar Aung San Suu Kyi on September 6.(Twitter/ Raveesh Kumar)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday met Myanmar’s State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and the two leaders are expected to discuss wide-ranging topics.

“Meeting a valued friend. PM @narendramodi with the State Councillor Aung San Suu Kyi,” external affairs ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar tweeted.

The prime minister’s visit to Myanmar comes amid a spike in ethnic violence with Rohingya Muslims in the Rakhine state.

Why is PM Modi’s visit important
  • The trip comes at time when Myanmar is facing intense scrutiny over exodus of Rohingya Muslims from Rakhine state.
  • Rakhine state is the starting point of $484-million Kaladan multi-modal transport projects that aim to connect Myanmar to India.
  • Ties between China and Myanmar have strengthened after Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy party swept to power.
  • India’s ties with Myanmar could prove strategically important as China steps up activity in the Indian Ocean.
  • Geographically, Myanmar is the first stop for India’s Act East policy.
  • Several insurgent groups have set up bases and training camps in Myanmar, a constant headache for India

He is expected to raise the issue of the exodus of the ethnic Rohingyas into neighbouring countries.

The Indian government is also concerned about Rohingya immigrants in the country, and has been considering to deport them. Around 40,000 Rohingyas are said to be staying illegally in India.

India and Myanmar were also looking at strengthening existing cooperation in areas of security and counter- terrorism, trade and investment, infrastructure and energy, and culture, Modi had said ahead of his visit.

Modi arrived in Nay Pyi Taw on Tuesday and met Myanmar President Htin Kyaw.

The Prime Minister is on the second leg of his two-nation trip during which he travelled to southeastern Chinese city Xiamen where he attended the annual BRICS summit and held talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping, Russian President Vladimir Putin and other world leaders.

This is Modi’s first bilateral visit to Myanmar. He had visited the country in 2014 to attend the ASEAN-India Summit.

The Myanmarese president and Suu Kyi had visited India last year.

Myanmar is one of India’s strategic neighbours and shares a 1,640-km-long border with a number of northeastern states including militancy-hit Nagaland and Manipur.