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UN Proves Thai soldiers Killed Burm
- Subject: UN Proves Thai soldiers Killed Burm
- From: RANGOONP@xxxxxxx
- Date: Wed, 19 Nov 1997 15:26:00
c The Associated Press
BANGKOK, <A HREF="aol://4344:30.GR_Thai.5262329.542489543">Thailand</A> (AP)
- U.N. investigators are looking into reports that Thai soldiers caused the
deaths of two Burmese refugees, including an infant, and wounded four.
``We've had various reports about this incident,'' said Amelia Bonifacio, the
Bangkok representative for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.
The soldiers fired their weapons for five minutes around ethnic Karen
refugees in the Thay Pu Law Sue camp near the Burma border to intimidate them
into moving to another location, Karen ethnic group activists and aid workers
As the refugees fled in panic, a 3-day-old infant was trampled to death,
another refugee was fatally shot in the stomach and four were wounded, the
activists said on condition of anonymity. The condition of the wounded was
Independent verification of the incident has not been possible because the
Ministry of the Interior has not allowed outsiders into the camp, west of the
Thai city of Umphang and 210 miles from Bangkok.
Bonifacio said investigators were conducting a fact-finding mission and would
try to enter the camp today.
The refugees angered Thai army officers because they refused to move to a new
location that the soldiers said was just a 10-minute walk from a Burmese army
post, the activists said.
More than 100,000 Karen and other ethnic refugees from Burma are living in
camps in Thailand, having fled Burmese army offensives aimed at wiping out
the Karen National Union, a guerrilla group fighting for Karen autonomy in
Burma since 1948.
The camps periodically have been attacked and burned down by a splinter group
of Karen under the control of the Burmese Army. Many refugees have said
Burmese soldiers participated in the attacks.
Refugees living in camps in the northern section of the Thai-Burma border
generally have been treated with compassion by the Thai army and local
There have been a number of clashes, however, in camps along the southern
section of the border where Thai businessmen are developing highways and
other investment projects linking the two countries.
Those camps, along with the Thay Pu Law Sue camp, are under the control of