11 July 2024

166 illegal migrant workers from Myanmar will be deported on Thursday, through the border checkpoint in the southern province of Ranong, after several of them tried to break out of their detention facility on Monday.

About 400 illegal migrants from Myanmar are detained at the temporary facility at the border after being arrested by Thai officials. It is reported that the stress associated with the cramped conditions at the facility triggered the attempted break out.

Thai officials said that the detainees want to return to Myanmar, but were prevented from doing so because the border is closed, due to the growing COVID-19 epidemic in Myanmar. The attempted escape has, however, convinced authorities to expedite their repatriation.

Pol Lt-Gen Sompong Chingduang, the immigration police commissioner, said the repatriation process is not normally slow for petty offenders, like illegal migrants, but it has been delayed because of COVID-19.

He maintained that all the detainees have been screened and cleared of the virus.

The remainder of the detainees will be sent home at a later date.