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Transnational Crime and Geopolitical Contestation along the Mekong

Over the last fifteen years, an illicit economy – comprising everything from unregistered casinos to online scamming operations – has boomed along a stretch of the Mekong River separating Laos and Myanmar.

Regional states will need to work together to rein in the criminal syndicates behind it.

  • ICG

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Myanmar’s Shan State and northern Laos’s Bokeo province have become a contiguous zone of vibrant criminality, much of it beyond the reach of state authorities.

The Mekong River, which bisects the zone, is also an axis of geopolitical competition, complicating efforts to combat organised crime…

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