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Thai FM proposes four-country escorts on Mekong River to ensure safety

(Xinhua)

10:42, October 16, 2011

CHIANG MAI, Thailand, Oct. 15 (Xinhua) -- Thai Foreign Minister Surapong Tovichakchaikul Saturday proposed joint escort operations from China, Thailand, Laos and Myanmar on Mekong River to ensure shipping safety after at least 12 Chinese sailors were hijacked and killed by suspected drug traffickers.

"Joint escorts of commercial ships on Mekong River by vessels from the four countries could be a good solution to the problem," the Thai foreign minister told Xinhua.

Thailand is willing to escort the ships if asked to do so, he said, adding that he will discuss the issue with his Myanmar counterpart in a visit on Oct. 24.

At least 12 Chinese sailors on two cargo ships were killed in an attack by unidentified armed people on Oct. 5 on a section of Mekong River that forms the border of Thailand, Laos and Myanmar. One Chinese sailor is still missing.

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wende at 2011-10-1771.255.94.*
Aside from sending military escorts, China should also arm Chinese vessels traveling in Mekong River.
  

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