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Thailand repatriates 500 dead Cambodians

More than 500 dead Cambodians were repatriated from Thailand in the first six months of 2017, according to an Interior Ministry official.

Chou Bun Eng, secretary of state at the ministry, said yesterday the 500 bodies were repatriated through three checkpoints in Banteay Meanchey province.

According to a National Police report, Thailand sent more than 500 bodies of Cambodian people to their families,” Ms Bun Eng said during a workshop on human trafficking yesterday.

Ms Bun Eng added there are currently more than 1.5 million Cambodians working both legally and illegally in Thailand.

Soum Chankea, Banteay Meanchey coordinator for rights group Adhoc, said he was not surprised to learn of the figure.

“The death of Cambodian people in Thailand is not rare,” he said. “We always hear reports of Cambodian bodies sent back due to heart attacks, or work or traffic accidents.”

Mr Chankea added there is a lack of thorough investigation into many of the deaths.

“Normally, we get a report that they died because of this or that, but we never see the autopsy or investigation to verify the claim,” he said.

“They are just sent back and forwarded to their families.”

Provincial governor Suon Bava said the deaths were mostly caused by the carelessness of migrant workers themselves.

“Mostly those who died are migrant workers who are careless in their work and fall from buildings or get shocked by electricity,” he said.

Khmer Times

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