Tag Archives: Thailand

Rescue Mission 613 Successfully Completed

 

Golden Triangle

Famous landmark in Golden Triangle – The Golden Buddha

LFNKR (Life Funds for North Korean Refugees) recently helped the first two of the six North Korean refugees waiting to escape to freedom. These six are the refugees for whom we recently invited donations.

Donate page

And it was your generosity that enabled us to help these two. Thank you so much for your ongoing interest and your continued support, and we invite you to help us help the remaining North Korean refugees on our waiting list.

Rescue mission 613 was initiated at the beginning of June, and although it encountered a few unexpected incidents, everything ended well.  Unfortunately, just before the rescue mission began, the identity of the special “guide” originally selected for the task was disclosed in the media. This, of course, meant the guide’s risk of arrest had become too great, so we hurriedly sent in a different guide. 

LFNKR Members Visit Golden Triangle

The giant golden Buddha landmark in northern Thailand

Summary Report  

As part of this organization’s ongoing rescue research activities, we dispatched several of members to the Northern Thailand border area in early July 2010. This is the so-called “Golden Triangle” area encompassing parts of Laos, Myanmar and Northern Thailand. The area was once famed as a heroin production and trafficking route, but now it is very well known among North Korean refugees as the entryway to sanctuary in Thailand.

Visit to Bangkok’s Immigrant Detention Center

Front gate of Thailand's IDC (Immigration Detention Center), where they await forwarding to South Korea, the US or Japan.

Although Thailand is not the final destination for North Korean defectors flowing into this country, this flow is currently the largest in the world, outside of China.  The numbers have steadily increased over the past several years.  According to the Thai government, about 1,000 North Korean defectors were detained here in 2007.  From 2008 and after, the Thai government stopped publicly announcing numbers, but my estimation is about 1,500 in 2008 and a bit higher in 2009.

See an NK Refugee Destination in Person

29 October 2009 – Sunday  

A one-day tour has been scheduled for 29 October to visit Chiang Sean, the small town in northern Thailand where we recently donated boxes of supplies (pictures here)

This in-person visit to a North Korean refugee “escape route and destination,” will include visits to the Chiang Sean Police Station and Mae Sai Immigration Office, plus a boat trip on the Mekong River. The North Korean refugees must cross this river to reach safety in Thailand. This one-day tour will be on 29 Nov. – a Sunday.

Medicines for NK Refugees Detained in Thailand

Chiang Saen, Thailand

Mr. Tomoharu Ebihara and an LFNKR staff member visited the Chiang Saen Police Station in northern Thailand to donate non-prescription medicines, blankets, and other items for North Korean refugees being detained there. Mr. Ebihara works at Thailand-Japan center, Payap University in Chiang Mai and also heads The Association for the Rescue of North Korea Abductees, Chiangmai (ARNKA).

Resettling NK Defectors in USA

Special Report by S. Yee

For a long while now, I have been keenly interested in what happens to North Koreans who have resettled in the USA via a third country. This is partly because I have been involved with Life Funds for North Korean Refugees in protecting and helping North Korean defectors in Southeast Asia. I wondered if there was anything I could do to help those who were headed for America, so when I had the opportunity in April and May to visit the US, I decided to find out how they are doing.

LFNKR’s Kato Speaks Out on Government Policies

On April 2, 2008 in Korea…

Kato Hiroshi, Executive Director of Life Funds for North Korean Refugees (LFNKR), was invited by Korea Christian University to speak at its international conference. His speech was entitled “International Refugee Policy and Intervention & Training Plans for Specialized Social Workers.” The following is the script of the speech he presented at the conference on April 2, 2008.

Japan’s 2nd Annual NK Human Rights Public Awareness Week

Special Report on Events in Japan

The second annual North Korean Human Rights Public Awareness Week took place during Dec. 10th through 16th, 2007, as set forth in Japan’s “North Korean Human Rights Act,” which was enacted in June 2006. The many events held included government-hosted events, as well as international conferences and symposiums.