Russian specialists inspect Tenasserim outposts

Jul 16, 2008 (DVB), Four Russian defence specialists have reportedly arrived in Tenasserim division to inspect the Burmese government's air defence and artillery outposts along the Thai-Burmese border.

The four specialists began their inspection of air defence outposts near Sin Phyu Taung, Htee Htar and Maw Htar villages on Monday.

Lieutenant-colonel Win Thu Aung, battalion commander of the air defence base in Kyauk Kanyar village, Yay Phyu township, was responsible for providing security for the Russian visitors.

Military analysts have speculated that the Russian experts have come to advise on the expansion of government outposts in the area.

The Burmese military currently has 14 air defence and artillery support outposts along the Thai-Burma border equipped with surface-to-air and surface-to-surface missiles.

Russian, Chinese and South African experts also visited Tenasserim division in January, ostensibly to inspect palm oil plantations, though the Karen National Union and a military analyst speculated that the visit was in fact linked to military cooperation.

Reporting by Moe Aye

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