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Posts Tagged ‘Repatriation’ (2 found)

Shan Community Groups Fear Signs of Premature Refugee Repatriation

Shan community groups are concerned at signs that Burmese authorities are preparing to repatriate Shan refugees from a camp in northern Thailand, even though there is no guarantee for their safety.

Last month, Burmese policemen from Tachilek visited Koung Jor camp in Wiang Haeng district, northern Chiang Mai province, asking whether the refugees wanted to return back to Burma […]

August 9, 2013  •  By Shan Human Rights Foundation, Shan Sapawa Environmental Organization, Shan Women's Action Network, Shan Youth Power and Shan Youth Network Group  •  Tags: , , , , , , ,  •  Read more ➤

Profiling Survey Stokes Refugee Fears

Mae La refugee camp by Burma LinkLast Thursday, 20 June, marked World Refugee Day and events were held highlighting the plight of refugees throughout the world, including a United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) organized event held at the Myanmar Peace Centre in Rangoon. According to the UNHCR, there are around 650,000 displaced people in Burma and around 150,000 refugees on the Thailand-Burma border, many of whom were born there. Yet as the discourse from the government of Burma and the international community is moving towards repatriation for those on the border, anxiety is building with refugees worrying that they will be forced to return to a place where they will live in fear of conflict, will have no livelihood opportunities, and no land to call home.

In recent weeks, a survey initiated by the Thai government and the UNHCR, and implemented by the Mae Fah Luang Foundation, an organization under Thai royal patronage, is being carried out, profiling refugees in Mae La camp. The survey has been heavily criticised as having insufficient input from refugees, and being designed to favour repatriation, and is thus stoking the refugees’ anxiety. The rationale behind the profiling is based on the UNHCR’s “preparation” for return, in that when the conditions for refugee return are right, relevant stakeholders will be sufficiently prepared to assist in a durable return to Burma. According to the UNHCR, “The profiling process will be a fully consultative and participatory process, where the refugees will be involved in every step. The questionnaire will be designed through consultations with the refugees.” Yet the reality of refugees’ participation in the process has been flawed and many refugees feel that the survey reflects a strong preference for return to Burma as the only viable solution, as opposed to staying in Thailand or resettling to a third country […]

June 24, 2013  •  By Burma Partnership  •  Tags: , , ,  •  Read more ➤