Bad News from Thailand and Laos on North Korean Refugees

Stanton, J. 2007. Thailand and laos planning mass repatriation of N. Korean refugees. One Free Korea. April 4, 2007. Available online:

Two e-mail messages in as many days convey some very bad news about North Korean refugees in two Southeast Asian nations, Thailand and Laos. Both nations, apparently seeing no U.S. objection and a new U.S. disinterest in the subject of human rights for North Koreans generally, are catching refugees and are planning to send them to their deaths, or a fate worse than. A reader writes:

Just caught this story on naver – It seems about 52 defectors have been apprehended by Thai authorities and if convicted of entering the country illegally are expected to be sent back to North Korea.

That would be the first mass repatriation of North Koreans by Thailand, and a grave development indeed.

If you have an account, please digg this.

One thought on “Bad News from Thailand and Laos on North Korean Refugees”

  1. Agreed, but of course the worst actors here are Pyongyang and Seoul. This is North Korea's fault for obvious reasons, but South Korea is hardly cleaner. The entire point of the Korean War (1950-present) is that Seoul is the only legitimate seat of government on the Korean peninsula. All North Koreans are actually citizens of the Republic of Korea. That the ROK does nothing, does not even complain, as Thailand and Laos prepare to ship its citizens to enemy-occupied territory is sickening.

  2. I would say that their actions are even worse than that. They complain to the U.S. about constant pressure on NK on for human rights and treat the subject as an embarrasing subject to be ignored. The subject of eventual unification is treated not as on opportunity to free their cousins from tyrrany, but a potential economic disaster to be assiduously avoided. The North Koreans have a better prayer of benevolent Chinese occupation than South Korean agitation for reunification as the ROK.

  3. None of this is exactly surprising, though, at least in Thailand's case. Under Thaksin, Thailand routinely ignored the actions of it's next-door neighbor, Myanmar; one of the articles I read suggested that Thaksin's family had commercial ties there. Why should the new military government be any less self-serving?

  4. Another point I thought of, about a second after I hit the Send button; if we want NK refugees taken care of, we may have to take them in ourselves.

  5. ElamBend,

    Certainly it now appears that Post-Kim-North-Korea looks will be in the orbit of Beijing and not Seoul. That Seoul may not mind is proof she does not deserve to be the capital of a “Greater Korean Republic” (Dae 大, Han 韓, Minguk 民國).


    Thailand's foreign policy has been cold-realist for some time, which has helped her maintain her independence even as Empires come and go. Thailand is a victim of South Korea's callousness to her own citizens.

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