Former Miss Grand Myanmar denied entry to Thailand, not arrested

Miss Grand Myanmar 2020 Han Lay

In an update to a previous story, Miss Grand Myanmar 2020 was not arrested but was denied entrance to Thailand after returning from Vietnam. Previously, it was reported that she was arrested by the Royal Thai Police but authorities are now saying she was not arrested, only denied entry based on irregularities in her passport.

Han Lay, the 23-year-old beauty queen, was seeking asylum in Thailand after being allegedly targeted by the Myanmar ruling military junta after a speech she made during the pageant’s finale in Bangkok. In that speech, she spoke out against the junta and urged it to stop using violence against its people.

The military junta then issued a warrant for her arrest after the competition ended, but the model stayed in Thailand. After going to Vietnam for a period of time, the model then tried to come back to Thailand and was detained at the Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok. Official reports of her status are still unclear, as some sources say her passport was revoked by the junta.

Archayon Kraithong, Immigration Bureau Deputy Chief, says she was, indeed, not arrested at the airport. But, an immigration officer spotted an irregularity on her passport. That irregularity could either be that she had no passport in her possession or that the junta had revoked it and the system caught it when it was scanned. Archayon says she was then denied entry based on violating Section 12 of the Immigration Act 1979 of Thailand.

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“She will be sent back to the country where her flight originated or she can fly to an alternative destination subject to approval by the airline she flew with.”

According to a Facebook account called “Natty in Myanmar,” the model had already sought asylum with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Thailand. Miss Grand International pageant founder, Nawat Itsaragrisil, who also represents Han Lay, says she was stopped on arrival from Vietnam due to being the subject of an Interpol notice. But that statement has not been confirmed.

“She doesn’t want to go anywhere else. She wants to live in Thailand. She’s waiting for a solution on how she can stay in Thailand.”

SOURCE: Thai PBS World /Bangkok Post

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Ann Carter

Ann Carter is an award-winning journalist from the United States with over 12 years experience in print and broadcast news. Her work has been featured in America, China and Thailand as she has worked internationally at major news stations as a writer and producer. Carter graduated from the Walter Williams Missouri School of Journalism in the USA.

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