Proof of Thailand’s inhumane treatment of refugees


by Rumbold
27th January, 2009 at 3:39 pm    

The Thai government has consistently denied rounding up Burmese refugees and dragging them out to sea in ramshackle boats, effectively leaving them to drown, in an attempt to stop them settling in Thailand. Now, new photographic evidence seems to confirm these stories:

“Human rights groups believe that up to 600 members of the ethnic Rohingya minority drowned after being caught by the Thai military while fleeing persecution in their native Burma. Nearly 1,000 migrants are known to have set off from the Burmese coast in two groups last month but there are fears that many more are missing.

Several hundred survivors have been rescued off the Indian Andaman Islands and the coast of Indonesia after drifting for days without food, water or engines.”


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24 Comments below   |  

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  1. David T — on 27th January, 2009 at 4:05 pm  

    Doesn’t count. Jews not to blame.

    No need to expect riots in London. And people of Thai origin need not fear getting the crap beaten out of them by ‘peace campaigners’.

  2. Leon — on 27th January, 2009 at 4:11 pm  

    David, keep this up and I’ll be deleting your posts on account of trolling.

  3. Anas — on 27th January, 2009 at 4:12 pm  

    just like Palestinian lives aren’t worth a shit to you and ur fellow warmongers over at HP sauce mr T.

  4. cjcjc — on 27th January, 2009 at 4:18 pm  

    Do you *never* question why there is such a disproportionate (to use a fashionable term) response to issues relating to I/P?

    David T is right – a similar number of Muslims have been murdered by the Thai suthorities as killed by the IDF – yet we will not hear a squeak from the usual suspects, let alone any violent protests.

    Why is it *only* I/P which generates this reaction?

  5. David T — on 27th January, 2009 at 4:20 pm  

    Organised a march against this? It has been going on for quite a while.

    Know much about the position of Thai Muslims? Here’s an article:

    http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1644900,00.html

    Very much like Gaza in some ways. There’s even a violent jihadist movement that beheads Buddhists and non-jihadist Muslims.

    You might have a little bit of difficulty in using the Buddhist Swastika to wind the Thai Buddhists up, though.

  6. Leon — on 27th January, 2009 at 4:20 pm  

    just like Palestinian lives aren’t worth a shit to you and ur fellow warmongers over at HP sauce mr T.

    And this would be the reaction which is caused by trolling.

    Please don’t respond to flame baiting, it’s not worth it.

  7. David T — on 27th January, 2009 at 5:12 pm  

    OK

    I’m sorry. I had actually come back to say “sorry for making such a cheap point”.

    This is worth attention in its own right.

  8. douglas clark — on 27th January, 2009 at 5:16 pm  

    Rumbold,

    It is stuff like that that makes me despair. I hope whoever was responsible is brought to justice, all the way to the ICC, if necessary.

  9. Don — on 27th January, 2009 at 5:20 pm  

    I’m afraid this is nothing new. When I lived in southern Thailand in the mid-eighties/early nineties it was generally known that Thai fishermen preyed on refugees off the coast and were far from worried about government intervention. There were reports of the military forcing over-crowded ramshackle vessels out to sea, but mostly they just turned a blind eye to piracy far more brutal than the Somali chancers everyone is so worried about.

    The southern seperatist movement was at that time mostly quiescent after a long violent spell, some border areas were moderately dodgy but the religious aspect was not, as I recall, at the forefront. I was gutted to see it fall into this situation.

  10. Sunny — on 27th January, 2009 at 5:25 pm  

    But Rumbold, how dare you criticise the Thai govt when there are countries like China who do much more! All this isn’t just moral relativism isn’t it? Are you saying these Burmese refugees are completely blameless? If that’s so, why don’t they root out the junta within their midst! Fascist bastards!

  11. marvin — on 27th January, 2009 at 6:29 pm  

    It’s of course utterly despicable that these people have been left to die.

    It does confuse me on why these lives will be barely mentioned by those extolling their virtues of valuing every human life equally. Where are the CiF articles?

    David T may have scored a cheap point, but, we know the point he makes rings true. These were Muslims. Killed by Thai military. Imagine if Israel took 600 Palestinians out to sea to die? We’d be looking at massive civil unrest around the world. Terror attacks against Jewish targets. Iran alluding to a new holocaust. CiF in meltdown…

  12. sonia — on 27th January, 2009 at 7:14 pm  

    Oh phooey, david t isn’t the only one. the lot of you are obsessed!

    thanks for posting this rumbold. the last time i was in bangladesh, just about a year ago, i went down to st. martin’s island. you have to get a boat from Teknaf, which is the southernmost tip of bangladesh, and as you journey down the river naf which then widens into the bay of bengal, literally, on the other side of this quite narrow river, is burma. teknaf is a town with lots of burmese refugees, and it is a terribly sad situation. ( i mean for people to have to escape to bangladesh, goodness!) they must have made sure its hard to cross out of burma that way now – if people are having to go the other way.

  13. sonia — on 27th January, 2009 at 7:16 pm  

    Douglas, you’re very sweet, but i seriously doubt what you want – will happen. there’s not a hell of a lot of human rights going on in that region, mind what happens to refugees, they are at the bottom of the pile.

  14. douglas clark — on 27th January, 2009 at 7:32 pm  

    Sonia,

    You may be right. However, the recent success in bringing a guy called Lubanga, he of child soldier fame, in front of the bench does at least suggest to me that even in difficult circumstances – The Congo! – it is still possible to see justice done.

    I realize it is early days, but at least we now have a mechanism, which wasn’t there before. Sad to say, this outrage might not be bad enough for the ICC to hear it.

  15. sonia — on 27th January, 2009 at 7:46 pm  

    douglas, well i don’t want to be right, and its not about being right or wrong, for me anyway. of course we should be trying anyway. Refugees, are unfortunately, consistently, screwed over, in every part of the world, and most nation-states are very wary of pointing to other nation-states transgressions in these areas, because they’re afraid of what they themselves are doing.

    as far as i know, the ICC is generally about ‘war crimes’ though of course technically, crimes against humanity, are meant to be included.

    taking the Thailand government to the ICC, over their treatment of refugees, well i dunno, i somehow doubt that will happen, but you never know.

  16. blah — on 27th January, 2009 at 11:22 pm  

    David T is a hypocrite and a wanker. If Muslims were supporting the Thai Muslims or Rohingyas Muslims more (and they should be- however media coverage has much to do with this) he’d probably be condemning them for being terrorists and “jihadists” and trying to get Muslims who publically supported the Thai or Rohinygas Muslims sacked from their jobs

    A difference in the situation is of course while Burma and Thailand are occupying others lands their states dont exist by having come from thousands of miles away to usurp the lands from its native occupants. Israel does.

  17. blah — on 27th January, 2009 at 11:25 pm  

    David T exposes himself. He claims people focus on Israels atrocities because of some anti-semitism because they dont focus on other nations atrocities

    So can he explain why he focuses on atrocities by Muslims (say Darfur) more than greater atrocities by non-Muslims (say Congo) other than because he dislikes Muslims?

    If zionists claim that people focus on Israel because of hatred of Jews they reveal the reason they focus on wrongs by Muslims.

  18. Katy Newton — on 28th January, 2009 at 12:17 am  

    Appalling. I have read about similar things that happened in the run-up to World War II. At least one boatload of refugees from Nazi Germany, believing that they had purchased or been promised safe passage from Germany, then found themselves abandoned on islands or thrown overboard.

  19. Cabalamat — on 28th January, 2009 at 12:50 am  

    Whether David T is an arsehole (he is) is not the point. If this is true, the Thai government are committing mass murder, which is clearly wrong.

    If the UK government had any backbone they’d issue a strongly worded condemnation about this and tell the Thais that unless they cleaned up their act, Britain would be raising the matter with the EU with a view to trade sanctions.

  20. Sunny — on 28th January, 2009 at 2:26 am  

    If the UK government had any backbone they’d issue a strongly worded condemnation about this and tell the Thais that unless they cleaned up their act, Britain would be raising the matter with the EU with a view to trade sanctions.

    Agreed. Actually it should say the same about the Sri Lankan govt. I have a bad feeling they’re also doing something nasty in northern SL while trying to clear out the LTTe remnants.

  21. Nomadic Matt — on 28th January, 2009 at 9:17 am  

    I’ve lived in thailand and its pretty obvious to anyone there that they Thai government mistreats the refugees…this is nothing really new

  22. Leon — on 28th January, 2009 at 10:44 am  

    It being nothing new doesn’t really make it right though does it?

  23. platinum786 — on 28th January, 2009 at 10:51 am  

    It is appalling, the fact the world ignores the issue is a disgrace. However i don’t think there are laws regarding this. Didn’t Australia refuse to take a cargo ship full of Afghan refugees?

    At least the Ozzies didn’t throw them to sea without a paddle like the Thai’s have done.

    Let us not forget the source of the problem, Burma.

  24. bananabrain — on 28th January, 2009 at 11:08 am  

    i’d just like to go on record that i can in fact agree with platinum786 on the occasions when it is warranted. and so i do here. it is a disgusting, underhand way to behave and i hope it is prosecuted if it can be.

    b’shalom

    bananabrain

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