Pattaya Daily News

30 January 2009 :: 01:01:59 am 39256

Thailand Grants Un Access to Rohingya Migrants

BANGKOK, Jan 29 - Thai Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya assured a United Nations refugee official on Thursday that the Thai government would grant the UN access to Rohingya migrants in the country.
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Mr. Kasit gave the assurances after a one-hour discussion with Raymond Hall, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Regional Asia Representative on Thursday.

“We have agreed in principle to the UNHCR request to meet Rohingya migrants in Thailand, and how to proceed on the issue pending the outcome of a meeting with Thai security agencies,” Mr. Kasit told reporters.

The UNHCR visit came after a provincial Thai court in the southern Andaman coastal province of Ranong sentenced 66 out of 78 Rohingya migrants to five days in jail for illegal entry. After jail tems have been served, they will later be handed over to the immigration police to be deported to their home country.

Thailand had been under fire from human rights groups and some Rohingya survivors who accused the Thai navy of inhumane treatment and forcing hundreds of Rohingya Muslim minority migrants who had arrived on Thai shores out to sea with few supplies. Some hundreds were reportedly missing.

The UNHCR representative had asked Thailand to speed up the probe into the accusations and to assure that any arriving migrants would be treated humanely and in a transparent manner.

“I think it’s the transparency of the investigation, but I think also the speed of the investigation — it needs to be thorough and it needs to be fast,” he said.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva ordered police to delay deportation of some seriously-wounded Rohingyas in Ranong province to their home country until they are fully recovered.

Some said to the Thai police that they had been beaten and caned by the Myanmar navy in the port of Mergui. (TNA)

Reporter : PDN staff   Photo : Internet   Category : Thailand News

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