Burmese embassy warns migrants to avoid Bangkok protests

The Burmese embassy in Bangkok has issued a warning to Burmese nationals and migrant workers in Thailand not to get involved with the anti-government protests taking place in the country.

The Burmese labour attaché at the Burmese embassy in Bangkok, Kyaw Kyaw Lwin, said it is important to retain good relations with Thailand.

“In order to maintain good relations, we are reminding our citizens not to get involved with [Thailand’s] internal affairs, for their own safety; to have caution when they travel around and regularly get news updates to avoid areas with mobs building up.”

Burmese labour rights activists in Thailand also warned migrants to keep away from the protests, citing incidents in 2010 where several migrants were arrested during anti-government protests in the Thai capital.

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“There is usually a lot of excitement involved in these political rallies and so it’s easy to get caught up with these emotions,” said Myint Wai of Thai Action Committee for Democracy in Burma.

“They [Thais] have legal protection under their country’s law. But the Burmese – migrant workers from a foreign country – do not have the same privileges of exception from the law as they do, and it’s rather difficult for us to resolve.”

The anti-government protesters are demanding: that Thailand’s Prime Minister, Yingluck Shinawatra, resign from office; that parliament is dissolved; and that a ‘people’s council’ is installed in government.

Yingluck, however, has rejected the protesters’ demands – calling them unconstitutional.

Since the protests began a month ago, three people have been killed and over 50 injured.

Tensions in the capital have eased somewhat, ahead of the King’s birthday on Thursday.

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