Detained Thai civilians released

Eight Thai civilians arrested by the Burmese army after trespassing across the border have been released.

Negotiations between Thai and Burmese authorities began shortly after the five men and three women were detained on 18 January. They had reportedly crossed into Karen state’s Ban Huay Pho Moo Bor to fish and collect corn before being arrested and taken to a nearby army base.

Locals told DVB that the eight are all residents of Mae Ohu village, which lies across the border from Waw Lay in Karen state. Waw Lay has been the focus of heavy fighting in recent months between Burmese troops and the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA).

According to the Thai News Service, the governor of Tak province in Thailand, Samart Loifa, has warned Thai citizens against crossing into Burmese territory.

The region across from Tak province has been beset by heavy fighting since early November last year, as Burmese troops attempt to rout Karen forces. Numbers of stray artillery shells have landed on Thai soil in recent weeks.

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