“Civil Society Networks and academics submitted documents to State Security Committee and Border Affairs – Move Forward party leader as a member of the ASEAN Parliament, proposes 9 recommendations to address the humanitarian crisis of border refugees and refugees in urban areas.”
On July 8, 2021, around 2:30 p.m., a network of civil society organizations and academics on behalf of the Civil Society Working Group on Resolving the Refugees from Myanmar submitted a recommendation document to address the humanitarian crisis. to internally displaced people and urban refugees from Myanmar at the National Assembly Building (Kiakkai) to Pol Maj. Gen Supisan Phakdinarunat as the vice chairman of the state security commission of Thai border affairs, National Strategy ,and National Reform and Mr. Pita Limcharoenrat as a member of the ASEAN Parliamentarians for Human Rights (APHR)
Prof. Surichai Wunkaew, Director of the Center for Peace and Conflict Studies, Chulalongkorn University said that the submission of this document is to follow up on humanitarian solutions to Myanmar refugees in the Thai border and urban refugees. Previously, the network Letters like this have been submitted several times since April but no progress has been made.
Wichai Juntavaro, staff of the Spirit in Education Movement (SEM) summarized the situation, conditions, problems, and the number of internally displaced persons (IDP) in Myanmar arising from the fighting between the Myanmar army and ethnic armed forces. Since the February 1 coup, more than 226,800 people have been displaced throughout Myanmar, with most of the 177,500 displaced, or more than a third, in Karen state. In Kayah or Karenni State, thousands of displaced people have taken refuge in Thailand. They had to face the hardships of escaping the persecution of the Myanmar army in the jungle area. There was also a severe shortage of living factors. safe shelter, food, clean water for consumption to access to public health and sanitation systems Moreover Although the Thai state has taken action to provide humanitarian assistance. However, it was found that Thai government officials continued to push refugees back to Karen State and Kayah State. It also blocked humanitarian aid from the Thai people. However, the battle continues today. The Myanmar military continues to crack down on displaced people and refugees still need help.
Kornkanok Wattanapoom, Refugee and Stateless Rights Network Representative It presented nine recommendations to address the humanitarian crisis in border areas and urban refugees:
1) The Thai government must not push refugees back into danger.
2) The Thai government must not block and should seek to facilitate the Thai people’s sector wishing to assist displaced persons and refugees from Myanmar.
3) The Thai government must endorse the task force on Rescue Refugees from the clashes between Myanmar’s armed forces and ethnic arm forces on the Thai-Myanmar border.
4) The Thai government must not deny asylum by claiming on the COVID-19 pandemic. It must allow refugees to live in temporary shelters provided by the state in accordance with humanitarian principles and human rights law.
5) The Thai government should grant temporary housing rights to refugees, should grant refugees temporary rights. so that asylum seekers can legally live in Thailand
6) The Thai government must provide refugees with access to lawyers if arrested and prosecuted.
7) Refugees should have access to a screening mechanism and have the right to file a claim for obtaining protected status in accordance with the Prime Minister’s Office Regulations on the Screening of Aliens entering the Kingdom and unable to return to their own country.
8) The Thai government must implement measures to ensure that access to disease screening, disease treatment, including vaccination due to the epidemic situation of COVID-19
9) The Thai government should ensure that refugees are able to return to their countries of origin voluntarily, are prepared, and when they are truly safe.
Pita Limcharoenrat, Move Forward party leader, as a member of the ASEAN Parliament on Human Rights, has come to listen about the situation and problems that arise along with four recommendations for solving the border humanitarian crisis and helping refugees in urban areas:
1) In terms of foreign affairs, the Thai government must provide humanitarian assistance. It is important to adhere to the principle of non-refoulment, which is to assure that refugees will not be sent back to face danger or war.
2) Apply the principle of the humanitarian corridors to enable humanitarian assistance in the form of 4 factors of both countries.
3) The Thai government should cut the state budget in support and assistance to infrastructure projects and special economic zones in Myanmar, due to the unrest situation in Myanmar. Given human rights issues in this situation, no one will dare to invest in projects in Myanmar. The current subsidy budget for Myanmar may not be worth the tax money allocated by the people in this respect.
4) In the part of helping refugees and certifying personal status in relation to the regulations of the Office of the Prime Minister on the screening of aliens who enter the Kingdom and are unable to return to their domicile. The Move Forward party’s legal team is following. The party will push for a law to support it properly and quickly. It also said that the 5 consensuses arising from the Special ASEAN Leaders’ Meeting on Myanmar on April 24 should be brought into concrete as soon as possible. because at the moment no progress has occurred. Thai and ASEAN MPs will continue to monitor the implementation of the 5 consensus on Myanmar issues.