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China, Laos vow to enhance security cooperation on Mekong River

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BEIJING, Oct. 30 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Defense Minister Liang Guanglie met in Beijing Sunday with Laotian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense Douangchay Phichit, saying that the two countries will enhance their cooperation in law enforcement and security on the Mekong River.

Two Chinese cargo ships, the "Hua Ping" and "Yu Xing 8", were attacked by armed people on the Mekong River on Oct. 5. Thirteen Chinese sailors were killed in the incident, in the "Golden Triangle" area where the borders of Myanmar, Thailand and Laos meet.

Liang expressed gratitude for Laos' support in helping stranded Chinese ships and crewmen return to China safely.

China, Laos, Myanmar and Thailand will hold a meeting in Beijing on Monday to discuss establishing a joint law enforcement and security mechanism between the four countries, in a bid to maintain order on the Mekong River.

"The meeting is very important," said Liang, adding he believed that, through the joint efforts of the four nations, the meeting would surely achieve positive results.

Liang said that bilateral military relations had yielded many satisfying outcomes in recent years. He hoped the two countries' armed forces can continue to lift their relations to a new level.

The armed forces of Laos and China share a deep traditional friendship, said Douangchay. He thanked China for its long-term support for his country and its army building.

He agreed that the Laotian government is willing to work with China to enhance law enforcement and security along the Mekong.

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