6 June 2024

About 3,000 ethnic Karen people have taken refuge on the Thai border, in Mae Sariang district of Thailand’s northern province of Mae Hong Son, after their villages were bombed by Myanmar army aircraft on Sunday.

Local officials in Mae Sariang said that the Karen have taken refuge at three locations in Mae Khong sub-district, as Thai security officials ensure that the displaced people do not venture away from the three locations.

Medical supplies have been sent to the refuges from a local hospital, as some of the children and elderly have fallen sick.

It is reported that hospitals in Sob Moei and Mae Sam Laeb sub-districts have been ordered to prepare to provide health services to the Karens.

Assistant Professor Thitivuth Boonvongvivatchara, of Chiang Mai University, said that the situation in the Karen state could improve in the next 4-5 days if the Karen National Union (KNU) rebel forces stop attacking Myanmar troops.

Thanee Saengrat, spokesman for the Thai Foreign Ministry, said that the embassy in Myanmar has arranged for the repatriation of more than 2,400 Thais living in Myanmar since the outbreak of COVID-19 early last year.

Currently, there are 448 Thais still in Yangon and 257 others in various townships.