Fri 29 Oct 2004
Filed under: News,On The Border
The commander of the Thai Army Region 3 said on Tuesday that he would call for the deployment of more troops to patrol against drug smuggling along the northwestern border.
Lieutenant General Picharnmet Muangmanee, the regional army commander who oversees national security along the northern and northwestern border with Myanmar, explained that the army has been surveying the border areas by air, and could see that opium growing has returned in a wider scale near the Myanmar border.
He said the findings have prompted the army to take a preventive position against cross-bordering trafficking.
The regional army commander also fears that a vast amount of amphetamine tablets hidden along Myanmar’s border would spill over to Thailand, at any time suppression on Thai soil is relaxed.
However, it is not only cross border drug trafficking that has worried the Thai army. Since Myanmar changed its prime minister, Thai soldiers have been put on alert to keep its border, especially in Ban Mae Sam Leb of Mae Hong Son province sealed off and safe, for fear of possible renewed
fighting between Myanmar’s military and its ethnic minority rebels.