Social media plea: Thai women entangled in Myanmar prostitution ‘web’ seeks rescue

Photo via Nation

A Thai woman reached out to a local news Facebook page for help after she and three other women were lured into prostitution in Myanmar

NinJa ToDay posted a video of a woman showing her Thai identification card and crying for help. She stated in the video…

“I am from the Isaan province of Ubon Ratchathani. I and three friends were lured into prostitution. They said we were being hired to work at a nightclub in the Tachileik province of Myanmar. However, they were forced to work as prostitutes at a brothel in Mong Pawk City since June of this year. We sought help from many organisations, both government and private sector, but they only told us to wait.”

The woman in the video, later identified as 35 year old Kae, revealed that she encountered the employment agent through a TikTok application.

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The agent advertised that the workplace was only a five to 10-minute travel from the Thailand border. Moreover, the agent assured them that transportation, accommodation, and meals would all be provided to them for free.

Kae said she agreed to work there and met with three women interested in working there as well. The agent then transferred 10,000 baht to the women for transport and asked them to travel to Chiang Rai where a man would pick them up.

The man took them to a riverside house before crossing the river to Myanmar. Kae said she was curious whether it was illegal to cross the border like this but the man insisted that everything was in order.

Once in Myanmar, they were transported on motorcycles to the city before embarking on a six-hour journey up a mountain where they were transferred to the brothel by car. Kae soon realised that they had been deceived, but the circumstances left them powerless to resist.

Upon reaching Mong Pawk City, the agent separated the women. Kae and one woman were confined to one building while the remaining two were held in a nearby location. Kae disclosed that she did not want to sell sex but saw that others who resisted were beaten and starved. She obliged fearing for her life.

According to Kae, they sought help from every organisation that they could think of before a bizarre set of circumstances changed their fortune – a Chinese businessman paid the brothel their ransom. The Chinese man offered them accommodation free of charge but he wanted them to repay the ransom if they were to return to Thailand. They are still stuck in Myanmar until someone can pay the Chinese man.

Meaung Ubon Ratchathani Police Station Superintendent Kanongrit Darat revealed the rescue processes must follow the system and that police officers were ready to facilitate the rescue. Kanongrit said he would coordinate with relevant departments to help the women.

Regrettably, this incident is not an isolated case of Thai women being lured into prostitution in Myanmar.

The Royal Thai Embassy in Yangon released an official statement last year to warn Thai women about this pervasive issue. The embassy cautioned against placing trust in lucrative job opportunities offered in the northern regions of the Shan state, such as Mong Pawk, Muse, Lahe, and the area surrounding Lahe Township.

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Petch Petpailin

Petpailin, or Petch, is a Thai translator and writer for The Thaiger who focuses on translating breakingThai news stories into English. With a background in field journalism, Petch brings several years of experience to the English News desk at The Thaiger. Before joining The Thaiger, Petch worked as a content writer for several known blogging sites in Bangkok, including Happio and The Smart Local. Her articles have been syndicated by many big publishers in Thailand and internationally, including the Daily Mail, The Sun and the Bangkok Post. She is a news writer who stops reading news on the weekends to spend more time cafe hopping and petting dwarf shrimp! But during office hours, you can find Petch on LinkedIn and you can reach her by email at

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