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Thai officials facing prosecution over human trafficking

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
File photo shows women and children from Myanmar’s persecuted minority of Rohingya Muslims.

Over a dozen government officials in Thailand are facing prosecution on the charge of human trafficking.

According to Thailand’s junta officials on Friday, senior policemen and a navy officer are among the officials, who are detained and being prosecuted with regard to this issue.

Deputy Foreign Minister Don Pramudwinai said the arrests prove that Thailand’s generals are resolute in their decision to bring to justice officials involved in human trafficking.

“At the least, this is an indication of how earnest and determined we are in trying to enforce the law and apprehend the perpetrators,” he added.

The military took over power in Thailand in a coup that followed months of political unrest and a disputed election in May 2014. The junta has imposed martial law, media censorship and a night-time curfew as part of what it calls an attempt to end years of political turmoil.

Reports say the people who are trafficked into Thailand are Rohingya Muslims from Myanmar.

On October 15, 2014, two Thai men were detained on charges of human trafficking.

In March, Human Rights Watch urged Thailand to look into its navy’s alleged role in the trafficking of Rohingya Muslim refugees from Myanmar.

Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar have been persecuted and faced torture, neglect, and repression since the country’s independence in 1948. Thousands of Rohingya Muslims have fled the violence in Myanmar’s Rakhine State since 2012.

The United Nations has described Myanmar’s 800,000 Rohingya Muslims in Rakhine as one of the world’s most persecuted minorities.


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