Thailand Says Myanmar Preparing For Refugee Return
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Posted 2012-09-14 06:29:11
Thailand says Myanmar preparing for refugee return
BANGKOK, Sept 14, 2012 (AFP) - About 120,000 Myanmar refugees in Thailand may return home within a year, the kingdom's National Security Council said Thursday, following recent talks between the two nations.
Tens of thousands of people, many from the Shan and Karen ethnic minorities who have fled war, are housed in camps along Thailand's border, but the end of outright military rule in Myanmar has raised hopes they will return.
Myanmar "is clearing landmines along the borders, preparing to build shelters and other infrastructure... to be ready within one year", the NSC said in a statement, citing its secretary-general Wichean Potephosree.
Wichean, who visited Naypyidaw last week, discussed the issue with Aung Min, a minister in the President's Office, who told him the former junta-ruled country will also provide training and jobs for the returning refugees.
Myanmar also wants Thais "to invest in building industrial estates" on its soil to employ the tens of thousands of potential returnees, the statement added.
The NSC's comments came as Human Rights Watch released a report condemning Thailand for failing to meet international standards on the treatment of refugees.
The kingdom has not ratified the 1951 Refugee Convention and has no law to protect refugees, leaving them vulnerable to exploitation, police harassment and arbitrary detention, the HRW report said.
"Thailand places Burmese (Myanmar) refugees with the unfair choice of stagnating for years in remote refugee camps or living and working outside camps without protection from arrest or deportation," said Bill Frelick, HRW's refugee programme director.
"Refugees from other countries are barely tolerated and Thai authorities sometimes arrest and detain them indefinitely," he added.
After a new quasi-civilian government replaced the long-ruling junta in Myanmar last year, Thailand announced that it wanted to shut the border camps, but HRW praised Bangkok for not rushing to close the facilities.
-- ©Copyright AFP 2012-09-14 | AFP News Sponsor
Published with written approval from AFP.
Posted 2012-09-14 06:49:16
Security and prosperity are the key.........as long as the refugees feel safe and have a chance of making a living they will be glad to go back.
Thailand has too often treated then as the lowest of the low and kept them entrapped in menial poverty stricken conditions and jobs. The problem is though, Thailand will miss them when they are gone, the Burmese refugees have a far greater work ethic than the Thais and they have been crucial to the economy.
It's the same old story, you don't miss it until it has gone, and Thailand will miss these people soon.
Posted 2012-09-14 08:24:31
Thailand had a chance to use their work ethic but instead they beat them to death
Many of the Burnmese do speak English, which puts ahead of the many Thais don't, and in my view that is a BIG EDGE
It won't take The Burmese to long to distance themselves in all areas of economic activity from Thailand.
Because Thailand has a huge difficulty in reaching decisions with debating everything from which toilet paper to use to wipe there
Arse's with plus 100s of other issues they put themselves at a trememdous disadvantage.
They are too busy pointing fingers at one another and playing musical chairs they cripple themselves from moving forward 1000s
Posted 2012-09-14 08:46:13
It is because of their work ethic and English skills that some feel threatened by, and thus treat them as they do. Travel agencies, restaurants, hair salons, maids.... anything where speaking English is a huge advantage, people would often rather employ Burmese or certain other SEA nationalities. Just walk around Sukumvit and you will see (and hear)
Posted 2012-09-14 13:16:46
So the Burmese want Thailand to help by building facilities and helping to train the returned refugees. OK we'll do that provided youcompletely destroy ALL the yaba factories operating in Burma.
Posted 2012-09-14 13:47:08
Who is 'we' Baz?
Posted 2012-09-14 14:02:42
so the refugees are at the mercy of the police and anyone else organised in human trafficing, enslavement, illegal workers, ...
Posted 2012-09-14 14:58:56
If the Burmese go back to Myanmar who's going to do all the work in Thailand?
They'll have to bring back slavery.
Edited by bigbamboo, 2012-09-14 15:01:24.
Posted 2012-09-14 16:51:31
No millions of them work legally in Thailand and in fact get longer visas and work permits than ferang do!
Posted 2012-09-14 20:42:40
The article is talking about refugees, not migrant workers.
Do the refugees get to leave the camps to do work inside Thailand?
Posted 2012-09-14 21:32:51
Exactly. they're not talking about sending back anyone who is here legally, nor are they talking about sending back any of the illegals who have snuck in. This is solely about sending back those Myanmar refugees who chose to leave and would rather live in the refugee camps than die in Myanmar.The article is talking about refugees, not migrant workers.
According to the article, the Myanmar junta says they're "going to clearing landmines along the borders, preparing to build shelters and other infrastructure... to be ready within one year", the NSC said in a statement.
They've been planting landmines for 20 years. do they really think they can remove them in one year? Do they care?
Post #2 starts "Security and prosperity are the key.........as long as the refugees feel safe and have a chance of making a living they will be glad to go back".
Blether, How many refugees have you talked to that are glad to go back?
the Myanmar govt has done a good job of talking, but little has actually been done. every human rights group still condemns many of their practices from recruiting child soldiers to their inhumane treatment of the Rohinga.
Posted 2012-09-14 21:46:25
The ruling Burmese juntas eviscerated the education system in Burma and English is only common amongst the elderly population, the relatively small numbers who were students until the late 1980s, and the relatively small Burmese diaspora living in the west. And the younger generation within Burma not only does not speak English, but they have become undereducated.
The folks in the camps are mostly minority folks who speak no English. I was just speaking to one of the military leaders of one of the minority groups and that group is still very, very cautious. Although the commander did note that the "front" is indeed quieter than it has been in years. There is still much that would need to be accomplished before the refugees in the border camps would feel secure enough to relocate back into Burma. But I see being cautious to be a vast improvement to living in fear.
Posted 2012-09-15 02:03:29
Exactly. they're not talking about sending back anyone who is here legally, nor are they talking about sending back any of the illegals who have snuck in. This is solely about sending back those Myanmar refugees who chose to leave and would rather live in the refugee camps than die in Myanmar.
Did you set out to mangle my post or did it just come naturally?
Posted 2012-09-15 03:11:02
i quoted your first paragraph accurately. After that you rambled about people from Myanmar living in Thailand legally and illegally. This article is about those who are living in the refugee camps along the border and are not allowed to leave. Why will Thailand, or anyone living in Thailand, miss them when they are gone?????
Posted 2012-09-15 04:09:44
@ el jefe
I'm sorry......you're going to have to go back and read the article again as you have plainly misunderstood it. The clue is in the words in black printed against the white background. If need be get a ruler out and read the article line by line and very slowly.
If you still can't understand where you have gone wrong in your interpretation come back to me and I'll point it out to you.......carry on.
Posted 2012-09-15 06:39:43
the karen and other persecuted minorities to return to their "country", only if desperate i think.
myanmar's government is making all the right noises, but making "thai" style media releases, about welcoming them back with open arms, is like sitting in a small room with a hungry tiger for the karen.
Posted 2012-09-16 02:06:19
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