KL still backs peace efforts

KL still backs peace efforts

Malaysia has given assurances that it will continue to support Thailand's efforts to negotiate peace with insurgent groups in the deep South, a Defence Ministry spokesman says.

Lt Gen Kongcheep Tantravanich was speaking after Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwon paid a courtesy call on Malaysian Defence Minister Hishammuddin Hussein during a visit to the neighbouring country on Thursday.

They discussed a wide range of issues, including threats posed by militants holding dual citizenship and Malaysia's pledge to support Thailand's dialogue with insurgents to bring about peace in the three southernmost border provinces.

Other issues discussed include the construction of a road linking a new checkpoint in Songkhla's Sadao district in Thailand with the Bukit Kayu Hitam checkpoint in Malaysia and joint efforts to maintain security along the Strait of Malacca, Lt Gen Kongcheep said.

Gen Prawit's delegation, including officials such as Gen Chalermpol Srisawat, chief of the defence forces, also attended the 55th meeting of the Thai-Malaysian General Border Committee (GBC) in Kuala Lumpur with the aim of boosting border security and cooperation.

During the meeting, the two countries hailed progress in bilateral cooperation and followed up on intelligence sharing to combat transnational crime, he said.

The two sides have set up a communications centre to boost efforts along the border between the two countries, he said, adding they have also held joint border patrols.

Both countries have also cooperated on humanitarian assistance and disaster relief efforts, he said.

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