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India, Burma Sign Bilateral Agreements  - 2004-10-25


India and Burma have agreed to step up cooperation in security, economics and trade.

The agreement came as Burma's military ruler, General Than Shwe, met with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in New Delhi Monday.

The talks focused on supply of natural gas to India through Bangladesh, cooperation in industrial and hydro-electricity development, and in the fields of health, science and technology.

General Than Shwe arrived in New Delhi Sunday on a six-day visit -- the first such trip by a Burmese head of state in 24 years.

India is one of only a few countries that maintains close ties with Burma, which is shunned by most democratic nations due to its harsh treatment of pro-democracy activists, including detained Nobel peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi.

The general's trip comes one week after the ouster of Burma's Prime Minister, Khin Nyunt, who supported talks with Burma's pro-democracy leaders.

Information for this report is provided by AP and AFP.

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