Thailand To Move Karen Refugees
Feb. 28, 1999
BANGKOK, Thailand (AP) _ Thailand plans to move about 20,000 Karen refugees from Myanmar to a camp further away from the border to help shield them from attacks, The Nation newspaper reported Sunday.
More than 100,000 refugees, mostly Karens, are living in camps inside Thailand after fleeing what they call an ethnic cleansing campaign by the Myanmar army.
Several refugee camps have been attacked and burned during the past few years by a splinter group of Karen allied with the Myanmar military. Some refugees have said that the Myanmar military participated in the attacks on Thai soil. Myanmar is also known as Burma.
Khajadpai Buruspat, secretary-general of Thailand's National Security Council, said the new camp for the Karens will provide easier access for Thai security officials and aid groups helping the refugees.
The new camps will be in the Mae Sot area of Tak province, some 250 miles northwest of the capital, Bangkok. The Karen are the second-largest ethnic group in Myanmar after the Burmans.