Refugees call for official status
By NAW NOREEN
About 100 settlers in Nupo refugee camp in western Thailand’s Tak province are demanding that they be given official status.
The group protested their stateless condition in front of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees’ office inside the camp yesterday calling for official refugee status and sufficient food aid.
Saw Thoolehdo Soe, secretary of the camp’s committee, said the protesters were upset that they have not received official refugee status even though they moved to Nupo in 2009.
“They want to become [recognised], but the UNHCR has yet to do so – they are still in the [evaluation phase],” said Saw Thoolehdo Soe. “Whether they will be [recognised] depends on Thai authorities.”
He said UNHCR officials in the camp told the protesters they will pass on their demands to their superiors.
There are over 17,000 residents in Nupo refugee camp, while 6,000 lack official status.