111 Thai nationals freed from Myanmar but 10 face charges

Photo courtesy of The Nation

A total of 111 Thai nationals stranded amidst Myanmar‘s violent conflict found their way back home to Chiang Rai.

The return of the Thai citizens, orchestrated by the Thailand-Myanmar Township Border Committee (TBC), marked the fourth group to be repatriated, tallying up to 179 individuals.

Amidst the gripping rescue, however, a shocking twist unfolded at the Second Friendship Bridge in Mae Sai. Ten of the returnees, setting foot on Thai soil, were immediately slapped with arrest warrants for their alleged involvement in criminal activities, including online scams.

Colonel Thula Zaw Win Soe, the Tachileik strategic force commander leading Myanmar’s TBC, expressed pleasure in aiding the Thai repatriation, emphasizing the effort to mend ties between both nations’ armies. On the Thai side, Colonel Natee Thomsen, head of the Thap Chao Tak Taskforce of the Pha Muang Force and Thai TBC, extended gratitude to the Myanmar army, highlighting the pivotal role of bilateral cooperation, reported The Nation.

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As the 111 repatriates reached Mae Sai, they underwent thorough medical examinations at the customs house. The dramatic turn of events escalated as the ten accused – eight men and two women – faced immediate legal action, being handed over to local police. The remaining 101 individuals were relocated to temporary shelters in Chiang Rai.

In related news, a major drug suspect was apprehended by Thai authorities as they stormed an old shop, uncovering a stash of approximately 50 million amphetamine pills. The premises, discovered today, were found to have secret entrances leading to the Thai-Myanmar border, facilitating illicit cross-border activities. Read more about this story HERE.

In other news, Thailand and Myanmar have joined forces to address the humanitarian crisis unfolding along the Thai-Myanmar border. The initiative aims to provide much-needed assistance to the thousands affected by the ongoing conflict, with both nations committed to fostering peace in Myanmar. Read more about this story HERE.

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Puntid Tantivangphaisal

Originally from Hong Kong, Puntid moved to Bangkok in 2020 to pursue further studies in translation. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong. Puntid spent 8 years living in Manchester, UK. Before joining The Thaiger, Puntid has been a freelance translator for 2 years. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and listening to music, as well as writing short fiction and poetry.

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