Gorkhatimes

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Myanmarese soldiers surround ULFA camp

Posted by Ramesh Khati on November 6, 2009

Guwahati, Nov 5 (IANS) Close on the heels of two senior rebel leaders of the outlawed United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) being arrested in Bangladesh, Myanmarese soldiers have reportedly surrounded a mobile camp of the outfit in the country’s Sagaing Division, officials said Thursday.
According to Indian intelligence officials, a group of about 80 to 100 ULFA militants based at a camp at Nyasing village in the northern Sagaing Division were being surrounded by soldiers of the junta in the thickly forested region.

“Myanmarese army columns with heavy weapons have virtually besieged the camp from all sides,” the official told IANS.

“Indian security forces have been positioned along the border areas to prevent entry of fleeing ULFA militants in the event of a crackdown by Myanmar,” the official added.

Two ULFA leaders, foreign secretary Sasha Choudhury and finance secretary Chitrabon Hazarika, were reported to have been arrested by Special Branch sleuths of Bangladesh Police in Dhaka.

“The ULFA is under tremendous pressure from all sides, first in Assam, then in Bangladesh, and now in Myanmar,” the official said.

The ULFA camp is located close to the general headquarters of the S.S. Khaplang faction of the National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN-K).

At least three other militant groups from India’s northeast, where numerous tribal and ethnic groups are fighting for greater autonomy or independence, have training camps in northern Myanmar’s thick jungles – all of them sheltered there under the patronage of the NSCN-K.

The NSCN’s Khaplang faction has been observing a ceasefire with New Delhi since 2001 although peace talks are yet to begin.

The first time Myanmar launched a military operation against the Indian rebels was in 2000 when at least a dozen separatists of the NSCN-K were killed.

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