Write on Friday, 13 March 2015 Published in Features

A proposed dam on the Mekong River in southern Laos would provide energy for the region, but at a significant environmental cost

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Fishers and farmers have been trying for some time to block the proposed Don Sahong Dam on the Mekong River in southern Laos. They recently made their views known at a public consultation on the project but it’s likely their concerns will be ignored and the dam will be built. “Great Gamble on the Mekong,” a new documentary by filmmaker and journalist Tom Fawthrop explores the probable dire consequences of the dam and the failure it would represent for a once-promising extra-legal agency, the Mekong River Commission.

Write on Friday, 20 February 2015 Published in Regional
Cracking down on the illegal drug trade in the Golden Triangle is a tough call. Alleged American drug trafficker Joseph Manuel Hunter (C) is escorted by Thai commandos as he arrives to board a chartered jet for extradition to the USA at Don Mueang airport in Bangkok, Thailand, September 27, 2013. Photo: Narong Sangnak/EPA
Cracking down on the illegal drug trade in the Golden Triangle is a tough call. Alleged American drug trafficker Joseph Manuel Hunter (C) is escorted by Thai commandos as he arrives to board a chartered jet for extradition to the USA at Don Mueang airport in Bangkok, Thailand, September 27, 2013. Photo: Narong Sangnak/EPA

Thailand, Myanmar, China and Laos are working together to tackle the Mekong triangle illegal drug trade, according to The Nation on February 20.

Write on Friday, 20 February 2015 Published in Trade
Workers load bags of rubber sheets and cotton onto a Chinese ship in the Thai port of Chiang Saen on the Mekong river, March 29, 2008, in the Golden Triangle region of northern Thailand, where the Mekong river meets at the borders of Laos, Thailand and Myanmar. Photo: Barbara Walton/EPA
Workers load bags of rubber sheets and cotton onto a Chinese ship in the Thai port of Chiang Saen on the Mekong river, March 29, 2008, in the Golden Triangle region of northern Thailand, where the Mekong river meets at the borders of Laos, Thailand and Myanmar. Photo: Barbara Walton/EPA

The leaders of Japan and five Southeast Asian countries along the Mekong River plan to craft a new strategy in July for Tokyo to contribute to sustainable development of the Mekong region beyond 2015, according to the Bangkok Post on February 19.

Write on Friday, 19 April 2013 Published in Regional

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A ceremony to mark the opening of an office from which to control joint anti-drugs operations on the Mekong River was held at Xishuangbanna on Friday, Chinese state media reported.

The ceremony was reportedly to mark the unveiling of the nameplate on the headquarters of the joint-patrol operations which will coordinate efforts by China, Laos, Myanmar and Thailand to suppress trafficking and other illicit activities in the region famously nicknamed the “Golden Triangle” for its long association with heroin and opium smuggling.

“The campaign showed the authorities' strong will to jointly address drug crimes, according to representatives present at Friday's event,” Xinhua reported, adding that liaison officers from the four countries will be posted at the headquarters to share information and coordinate law enforcement efforts.

Xinhua said that law enforcers will aim to “crack a series of major cases of trans-national and trans-regional drug-related crimes, break major narcotics production chains and transport networks, and hunt drug-related fugitives.”

Joint efforts among the Mekong sub-region partners were intensified after 13 Chinese sailors were brutally killed in 2011 by a drugs gang led by Shan warlord Naw Kham who was last year executed in Yunnan for the murders.

For more background:
  1. Mekong patrol launched from Yunnan
  2. Naw Kham sentenced to death in China