Steps must to curb inflow of illegal arms
Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Uninterrupted flow of illegal arms into the country from across the borders has  marked a significant rise in recent times . Reports appearing in the press that huge illegal arms are entering the country everyday. Three rebel groups of Myanmar are selling arms to the terrorists of Bangladesh in the border areas of Cox's Bazar and Bandarban ahead of the elections here, a report said. The report also indicates that the international arms smugglers, who are always active in coastal belts of Chittagong and Cox's Bazar, have stepped up the supply of arms to Bangladesh for brisk business during the eelction season. The report is alarming as the vast coastline in the Bay and the border points between Bangladesh and Myanmar have become since long a sanctuary for the arms smugglers who are bringing sophisticated firearms including AK-47, M-16 rifles, long-range pistols, revolvers, grenades etc to Bangladesh. Huge arms, ammunition and explosives are coming to Bangladesh from across not only Bangladesh-Myanmar borders but also from India and the continued inflow of illegal firearms and ammunition from across the borders has been contributing largely to the deterioration of the country's law and order situation. Hundreds of murders are being committed in the country every year. And, according to reports, the arms used in most of these killings are illegal and part of those smuggled from across the border. The press reports quoted experts as saying that there are about 80 terrorist syndicates in the country of which 28 operate in the capital alone. They also said there are in the country thousands of illegal arms which include AK-47 and M-16 rifles, revolvers, five stars, nine shooters, MI-6s, pistols etc. The spread of lethal firearms in the hands of criminals and terrorists only pose a serious threat to the security and peace of the people. The additional inflow of smuggled arms to the country, specially on the eve of the elections, may cause further deterioration in the law and order situation which marked no improvement in recent time despite many raids and drives by law enforcers and arrest of good number of alleged criminals and suspects. The government should immediately take more stringent and effective measures to check smuggling of arms into the country and recover the illegal arms .

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