On The Border


Northern Thailand has long been home to thousands of Burmese refugees who have fled ethnic fighting and their country’s military government for temporary camps. After Burma’s political opening, more of these refugees are returning home, but many, such as ethnic Karen groups, say it’s still not safe.
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A Burmese border guard police officer has confirmed that a member of the Border Guard Bangladesh was killed by his unit on Wednesday when a clash broke out between the two sides amid rising tensions along the border, with the government in Dhaka calling for an investigation into the incident.
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The Thai-Myanmar Friendship Bridge and border gates have been temporarily closed after Thailand’s military declared a coup on Thursday.
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Myanmar-China border trade has reached US$268 million between April 1 and May 15, since the start of the current fiscal year.
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A host of international based Burma human rights advocacy organisations have voiced grave concern that refugees on the Thai-Burma border are being forced to return to Burma prematurely because of deep cuts in international aid.
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Four border guard police officers were killed and another wounded after a clash with an armed group along the Burma-Bangladesh border in Maungdaw Township, northern Arakan State, on Saturday, local authorities say.
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The construction of a fence along Burma’s border with Bangladesh has resumed in Arakan State. (more…)

A border-based rights group has accused Thai immigration authorities for extorting and mistreating Myanmar migrant workers on the Mae Sot-Bangkok expressway.
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Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), who have already been displaced twice and some even trice, have to flee once again as battles rage in southern Kachin State and northern Shan State between Kachin Independence Army (KIA) and Burmese Government troops.
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Trade across Burma’s land borders grew by more than a fifth last year, with goods being traded to and from China making up the majority of the trade, an official said.
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Protesting Burmese migrant workers in Mae Sot, Thailand, returned to work on Friday at the Yuan Jiao Garment factory after successful negotiations produced a resolution to the labor dispute there on Thursday.
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The volume of trade through the busiest crossing on Burma’s border with Thailand is rising, according to the Karen State chief Minister, who predicted an increasing flow of goods as cross-border links improve.
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Nearly a thousand Burmese migrant workers staged a rally outside their garment factory in northern Thailand, calling for improved labour rights.
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Nineteen huts were razed to the ground and 31 demolished to prevent a fire from spreading at a refugee camp on the Thai-Burmese border on Monday night, a camp official has confirmed to DVB.
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The patron of the opposition National League for Democracy (NLD) party paid a visit on Monday to the renowned Mae Tao Clinic for Burmese refugees and migrants in Mae Sot, Thailand.
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US official for Myanmar Judith Cefkin urges Bangladesh
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Expatriate refugees from the poverty-stricken nation of Burma have begun filtering back, partly as their country of origin has democratized and more ominously because they are feeling the heat from host countries like Thailand, India, Bangladesh and Malaysia to leave.
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The United States has wound up a special resettlement programme for Myanmar refugees in camps on the Thai-Myanmar border, the United Nations said Wednesday.
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Back-to-back fires that ravaged two refugee camps along the Thai-Burma border—killing one person and affecting 900—have added to mounting pressure on the refugees to return home, amid talks on repatriating them as Burma opens up after half a century of brutal military rule.
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Refugees face increased hardship as funds dry up ahead of their expected repatriation
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