태국 정부는 미얀마 카렌주 전쟁 난민들을
죽음으로 몰아넣는 행위를 중단하라
미얀마에 쿠데타가 발생한 이후, 태국-미얀마 국경지역의 살윈 강변에 전쟁을 피해 탈출한 난민들이 강을 건너 매홍손 지구에 있는 태국으로 건너와 안전을 위해 임시 피난처를 찾고 있다.
그러나 많은 곳에서 난민들은 미얀마의 상황이 호전되었다는 구실로 돌아가라는 태국 당국의 압력을 받고 있다. 난민들 중에는 어린이, 여성, 노인, 장애인들이 많이 있어 그들은 안전을 심각하게 위협받고 있다.
하지만 이 지역을 담당하는 태국 주정부 관리들은 이들을 밀어내라는 지시가 위에서 내려왔으며, 난민들이 계속 이곳에 머물게 되면 태국의 국경 무역과 경제에 영향을 미칠 것이라고 말하고 있다.
미얀마 군은 전투기를 동원해 민간인 마을과 가까운 태국-미얀마 국경 인근 카렌군의 군사기지를 공격하고 드론과 무인 항공기를 보내 항상 마을 내부를 감시한다.
이에 5·18기념재단은 태국 정부가 미얀마 난민들은 압박하고 벼랑으로 내모는 행위를 중단하고 인도주의 원칙에 따라 난민들에게 필요한 원조를 제공하기 위해 노력해야 하며 국제 사회의 관심이 더욱 절실함을 호소한다.
아래는 살윈 강 인민 네트워크 영문 성명서 전문.
Urgent Statement: Stop pushing back refugees of war to Kayin State, Myanmar
8 May 2021
At this moment, many refugees escaping from warfare in the border region of Thai-Myanmar on the bank of Salween River have cross the river to come to the Thai side in Mae Hong Son District to seek temporary shelters for their safety.
However, in many places these refugees are pressured by the Thai authorities to go back on the pretext that the situation has improved.
The refugees are still worried and concerned about their safety, because among them there are children, women, elderly people and disabled people.
But the Thai state officers in charge of the region explained to them that the order had come from above to push them back, and if they continued to stay here, it would affect Thailand’s border trade and economics.
At this time, fighter aircrafts of Myanmar still attack and bomb military bases of the Karen army near the Thai-Myanmar border, close to villages of civilians. The Myanmar army also sent drones and aircrafts to investigate inner villages all the time.
Following the current situation in the border area, the Thai authority should evaluate the circumstances carefully based on accurate data and credible information sources.
The strict measures must be loosened in order to provide necessary aids to the war refugees based on humanitarian principles, along with maintaining close monitoring and evaluation of the circumstances on the basis of national security and humanitarian principles.
The network therefore demands the Thai authorities, the Thai government and the Thai security sectors that:
1. The Thai government and Ministry of Defence as a Thai security sector should warn the Myanmar military in order to stop aerial attacks in the Thai-Myanmar border area immediately.
The Myanmar military must stop attacks against civilians’ houses and dwellings, because aerial attacks conducted by the Myanmar military so far have seriously affected civilians’ lives.
Bombs from fighter aircrafts have forced people in the Kayin State to escape to the Thai side for their safety. This also has affected the local community of the Thais in the border region as well.
2. The Thai security sector should allow the war refugees to stay temporary for their safety according to humanitarian principles.
The access to humanitarian aids for them must be immediately opened, and no more delay should be allowed for time-consuming evaluation of the circumstances, because among these refugees there are new-born babies, children, patients and pregnant women, and some of them are suffering from such diseases as diarrhoea, malaria and so on.
3. The strict measures should be loosened, and an integrated management of relevant parties should be opened up in controlling and helping the refugees in accordance with humanitarian principles, as well as informing the public on the problem solving process and providing proper understanding on the situation, instead of disrupting or closing the communication channels and humanitarian aids.
4. Proper and safe temporary shelters for the war refugees should be provided in accordance with humanitarian principles due to the fact that they are all vulnerable group of children, elderly people, disabled people etc.
5. Pushing them back to deaths should be stopped. Pushing refugees back to danger is against international rules. The principle of not sending refugees back is an international rule that must be respected and practiced. The refugees should be able to decide when to go back in an appropriate and proper timing.
People’s Network of Salween River