facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

U.N. appeals to stop Hmong deportation

Dec. 24, 2009 at 6:17 PM   |   Comments

NEW YORK, Dec. 24 (UPI) -- The United Nations says it is calling on officials in Thailand to stop the planned deportation of 4,000 ethnic Hmong to Laos.

Antonio Guterres, U.N. high commissioner for refugees, said refugees and asylum-seekers cannot be forcibly returned to countries or areas where they could face persecution.

Thailand has said it plans to deport the Hmong before the end of the month, in line with a bilateral agreement with Laos. The United Nations said at least 150 of the Hmong are recognized refugees.

"In accordance with international law, Thailand has the responsibility and international obligation to ensure that any return of recognized refugees or other persons in needs of international protection to their country of origin is undertaken on a strictly voluntary basis," Guterres said Thursday in a statement. "To proceed otherwise would not only endanger the protection of the refugees but set a very grave international example."

The United Nations said many Hmong living in the highlands of Laos participated in the military conflict that engulfed Laos in the 1960s and 1970s. Tens of thousands of Hmong fled to Thailand in search of asylum when Pathet Lao came to power in 1975.

© 2009 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Recommended UPI Stories
Featured UPI Collection
trending
Celebrity Couples of 2014 [PHOTOS]

Celebrity Couples of 2014 [PHOTOS]

Most Popular
1
Poll: Voters don't like Republicans but will vote for them Poll: Voters don't like Republicans but will vote for them
2
Texas woman set for execution for starving girlfriend's son Texas woman set for execution for starving girlfriend's son
3
Playboy Magazine names UPenn top party school for 2014 Playboy Magazine names UPenn top party school for 2014
4
Occupy Wall Street celebrates 3-year anniversary by forgiving $4 million of student debt Occupy Wall Street celebrates 3-year anniversary by forgiving $4 million of student debt
5
Light 4.0 earthquake shakes Seattle area Light 4.0 earthquake shakes Seattle area
Trending News
Video
x
Feedback