Thai government denies pushing back Myanmar civilians at the border – Thai PBS World Tonight [30th March 2021]

The Foreign Affairs ministry has denied reports that the Thai government has pushed back Myanmar civilians that fled conflict across the border into the country.

The statement published by the spokesman of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Tanee Sangrat, said that there are certain news reports alleging that some Karens who fled into Thailand have been forced to return to Myanmar are inaccurate.

“Those reports cite information solely from non-official sources without confirming the facts from official sources on the ground which affirmed that no such pushback took place.”

The past weekend saw the deadliest crackdown yet since the coup on February 1st, raising the total death toll to over 500 people.

Myanmar local media reported the military launched air stile attacks into areas where Karen-ethnic resided, resulting in thousands of them fled into the forest, and crossed the border to Thailand.

The Karen National Union has been supporting the anti-coup movement and reportedly attacked some of the military posts in their state.

Tanee stated that Thailand has been monitoring the developments in Myanmar closely.

He also said that, at this particular time, relevant Thai agencies on the ground have made “appropriate preparations, including in discussing standard operating procedures and potential holding areas to accommodate any possible movements.”

Tanee also said Thai authorities will continue to look after those on the Thai side of the border while assessing the situation in Myanmar closely.

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