China, Myanmar eye greater cooperation in fight against cross-border internet fraud, gambling
Published: Mar 24, 2023 01:50 AM
Ruili port in Southwest China's Yunnan Province links the country with Myanmar. Photo: VCG

Ruili port in Southwest China's Yunnan Province links the country with Myanmar. Photo: VCG

Chinese Ambassador to Myanmar Chen Hai met with Home Affairs Minister of Myanmar Lieutenant General Soe Htut on Thursday in Nay Pyi Taw and the two sides talked about enhancing cooperation in cracking down on cross-border crimes including internet fraud and gambling, according to the Chinese embassy.

Cross-border crimes damage the interests and safety of the people, undermine social stability and order, and affect exchanges and cooperation between China and Myanmar, Chen said during the meeting, according to a statement released on the embassy's WeChat account on Thursday.

The talks came after police from the two sides recently cooperated in successfully rescuing four Chinese college students who were lured to Myanmar by some so-called net friends using the bait of high-paying jobs, which attracted wide public attention.

The recent cases of Chinese personnel illegally crossing into Myanmar are all linked to illegal activities such as online fraud and gambling taking place in Myanmar, Chen noted, calling on the Myanmar side to attach great importance to the seriousness and harmfulness of relevant activities, further strengthen coordination and cooperation with China, increase efforts to crack down on related illegal activities, and create a clear environment for China-Myanmar friendly cooperation.

The Myanmar side is well aware of the dangers of illegal activities such as cyber fraud and gambling, and attaches great importance to the position stated by the Chinese side on many occasions, and has stepped up efforts to crack down on these activities, Lieutenant General Soe Htut said at the meeting.

The general stated that in light of the continued prevalence of illegal activities, Myanmar is willing to collaborate with China and neighboring countries to form a joint force aimed at resolutely combating and effectively containing such illegal activities. This joint effort will work towards safeguarding the friendly cooperation between Myanmar and China, and ensure the safety of people's lives and property.

In recent years, online gambling and telecommunications fraud have caused a series of social problems in Myanmar, according to media reports, along with other crimes including murder, kidnapping, human trafficking, illegal immigration and online gambling. In order to attract labor, criminal groups often lure people from neighboring countries to Myanmar with a promise of high salaries, media reports said.

Authorities in the Zinzhan district in Hefei, capital of East China's Anhui Province, said on Monday that four students from a local vocational school who were lured to Myanmar illegally had returned to China safely.

According to media reports, the four students entered Myanmar illegally earlier this month for work. During their stay of about 10 days in the country, the students tried to get jobs at a telecom fraud outfit but were refused as they were too young.

As China is witnessing a rebounding number of people going abroad to travel and work, the case of the four students drew public attention back to the long-standing problem.

Amid the concerns, public security authorities from China, Myanmar and Thailand reportedly held a conference in Bangkok on Monday over the issue of human trafficking, according to media reports.

The meeting is expected to play a positive role in cracking down on cross-border crimes concerning the three countries.

The Thai Embassy in China also released a statement on its Sina Weibo account in which it stressed that it pays close attention to the safety of Chinese travelers.

Global Times