Thai authorities order KNU to leave Thai soil

Mar 6, 2009 (DVB), A letter stating that no Karen National Union members are allowed to live on Thai soil has been sent to the KNU by Thai authorities.

The letter, sent on 11 February, instructs KNU members to move back and settle on the Burmese side of the border.

It was issued by the Thai government on the instigation of the Burma's ruling State Peace and Development Council and the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army.

"The Thai authorities issued the edict on the basis of the argument of the SPDC and the DKBA that KNU issues orders for its troops to leave the Thai side," said KNU Central Executive Committee member David Htaw.

Htaw insisted that the KNU had maintained the decision not to base its movements in Thailand and that it is more effective for KNU troops to rally within Burma.

But the Thai authorities won’t forcibly expel KNU members who receive medical treatment in Thailand.

Reporting by Thurein Soe

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