Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said that India shares Myanmar’s concerns over the situation in the country's Rakhine state where the army has launched a crackdown on the Rohingyas, triggering a mass exodus.
"We share your concerns about the extremist violence in Rakhine state and violence against security forces and how innocent lives have been lost," Modi said in a joint address to the media along with Myanmar State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi following delegation-level talks between the two sides here.
"Whether it be the very important peace process or resolving any other special issues, we hope that all the stake holders together can find a way out in which the unity and territorial integrity of Myanmar is respected and at the same time, we can have peace, justice, dignity and democratic values for all," he added.
Suu Kyi is under mounting international pressure to stop the alleged human rights violations against the Rohingyas, who are denied citizenship in Myanmar. Thousands of Rohingyas are crossing over into Bangladesh -- where they are sparingly given refugee status -- to escape from the violence in Rakhine state. Media reports quoted the UNHCR spokesperson in Bangladesh as saying that at least 123,000 Rohingyas have crossed over in the past few days.
The latest exodus began on August 25, after Rohingya insurgents attacked police posts in Rakhine leading to a violent offensive by the Myanmar Army.
Meanwhile, India has said that it would deport all Rohingyas living in the country illegally but the country's Supreme Court has said that it will hear on September 11 a plea seeking a direction to the Central government not to deport about 40,000 Rohingya Muslim refugees back to Myanmar.
Modi further lauded Suu Kyi for her leadership in the Myanmar peace process and said India fully understood the challenges she was faced with. He said both countries should work together for the peace and stability along the land and maritime borders.
This is Modi's first bilateral visit to Myanmar. He had visited the country in 2014 to attend the ASEAN-India Summit. The Myanmarese President and Suu Kyi had visited India last year. Myanmar is one of India's strategic neighbours and shares a 1,640-km-long border with a number of northeastern states including militancy-hit Nagaland and Manipur.