11 July 2024

The Thai Embassy in Myanmar is providing shelter for Thais who were trapped in a border town, where fighting between the junta and an ethnic alliance is escalating.

Thai government spokesman Chai Wacharonke said Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin has already been informed that 162 Thais became stuck in the town of Laukkai in Myanmar.

“The Thai Embassy in Myanmar has settled the Thais in a safe shelter and is providing them with necessities. The embassy is talking to the Myanmar authorities to find ways to get them back to Thailand as soon as possible,” the spokesman said.

Fighting has been raging in Myanmar for a week across a wide swathe of Shan state, in what analysts say is the biggest military challenge to the junta since it seized power in 2021.

The Brotherhood Alliance, made up of the Arakan Army, the Ta’ang National Liberation Army and the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army, has captured dozens of junta bases in and around the towns of Mong Ko and Chin Shwe Haw, in north-eastern Shan State, since launching its “Operation 1027” offensive a week ago, Irrawaddy online reports.

It also claims that the Thais are among some 500 foreigners, including those from Nepal, Ethiopia and Laos, who were trapped in Laukkai.

“The foreigners were recently rescued from online scam gangs operating in the area,” according to the publication.