Ks5 billion earmarked for fencing along Myanmar-Bangladesh border line

Soe Min Htaik + Kyaw Myo
The party from the Ministry of Border Affairs inspects the border fencing sharing with Bangladesh on September 12.

State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi gave instructions on quick allocation of budget to upgrade fencing some remaining 40 miles of the 170 mile-border sharing with Bangladesh as a budget of Ks5 billion has been granted, Zaw Htay, Director-General of the State Counsellor Office, told the media on September 13.

The move came from the press conference on why Aung San Suu Kyi won’t attend the United Nations General Assembly held at the Presidential House of the State on September 13.  

Zaw Htay, Director-General of the State Counsellor Office, said: “Fencing has started. We need to issue a statement in this regard. The budget for the fencing is placed in 2016-2017 and 2017-2018 fiscal years. The budget has been already granted. Now General Ye Aung, Minister for Border Affairs is making an inspection tour of the fencing there. There are quite number of holes in the fencing between mile posts No 30 and 47.

“Some places on the fencing are broken. Bengalis are running through these holes. These holes are to be repaired. The budget is divided into first, second and third steps. Natural disasters also broke some places. There are water outlets in the south of boundary mile post No 146. For all things, a budget of Ks5 billion is already granted. The State Counsellor instructed concerned officials to rapidly fulfill expenditures to upgrade fencing the border line. Barbed wires will be used. The existing fencing needs strength and height.”

We have left to fence 40 miles. We will have to upgrade them. Our fencing is very low in quality. Technology must be enhanced. Some fencing is low in height. The holes will have to be mended, Zaw Htay said.

The reporter asked Zaw Htay what the government’s opinion on proposal to establish a safe zone by ICRC was.

Zaw Htay replied that the government did not totally accept the proposal. For instance, Syria establishes safe zone. The government is not allowed to go there. The government planes are also the same matter. Government security forces are not allowed to go there. For that reason, if we accept the safe zone, ARSA or government security forces are not allowed going there. The safe zone is controlled by the international community. We don’t accept the safe zone proposal.

Translated by Win Htut