Indian PM says shares Myanmar's concerns over Rakhine violence


The heads of the Senate and National Assembly standing committees for human rights have demanded that the PM rescind a presidential medal given to Aung San Suu Kyi - the head of Myanmar's ruling party and the de facto leader of the country - due to her failure to control or even condemn the genocide in her country.

Myanmar denies its Rohingya population citizenship and regards them as illegal immigrants - even though many have lived in the country for generations.

Modi also lauded Suu Kyi for her leadership in the Myanmar peace process and said India fully understood the challenges she was faced with.

■ India stands with Myanmar over the issue of violence in the Rakhine state which has led to loss of innocent lives: PM Modi.

Modi also presented a sculpture of Bodhi tree to the Myanmar President. "Prime Minister Modi with the State Councillor Aung San Suu Kyi", External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar tweeted.

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While she has previously acknowledged problems in Rakhine state, she has denied the ethnic cleansing of the Rohingyas, the BBC said.

"I feel that India's democratic experience is relevant to Myanmar and therefore, in Myanmar's executive, legislature, election commission and press council are institutions where we have comprehensive cooperation programmes in capacity building", he stated, adding that as neighbours, both countries' security interests were the same.

"Fake information" is being used to stoke tensions in the Rohingya crisis that has seen tens of thousands flee Myanmar in recent weeks, says Aung San Suu Kyi. Ahead of his visit, Modi had said India and Myanmar were looking at strengthening existing cooperation in areas of security and counter-terrorism, trade and investment, infrastructure and energy, and culture.

It is his first bilateral visit to the country; it is a very important neighboring country.

He appreciated India's Act East Policy and Neighbourhood First Policy, saying that these policies have helped tighten the friendship and expand the dialogue partnership between India and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). 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.