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Thailand's anti-human trafficking efforts to benefit Myanmar workers

Jul 31. 2014
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By The Nation

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Thailand is on the process to heighten flexibility for workers from Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia to obtain legal identification paperwork and land needed work in the country, said the Royal Thai Embassy in Washington.
In the release issued chiefly to show Thailand’s actions to fight human trafficking, the embassy said that Thailand is working in close collaboration and with the support of neighbouring nations through bilateral Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs). Thailand is also working with partner countries, like the US, and related International Organisations, especially the UN-Country Team (UNCT) in Thailand, to exchange ideas and inputs in this important process. 
The newly established Policy Committee on Migrant Workers and Human Trafficking, chaired by General Thanasak Patimaprakorn, the Chief of Defense Forces and Deputy Chairman of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO), is responsible for the implementation of the plan and will work in collaboration with the private sector and international NGOs. 
Under the plan outlined out by the NCPO, illegal workers will be given temporary permits to work in Thailand. Once these workers pass the verification process, they will be allowed to apply for permanent work permits by using their passport. This initiative, led under the direction of the Ministry of Interior, will bring millions of migrant workers out from the shadows and legitimise their legal status.
This effort is part of the Royal Thai Government's plans to end the activities of human traffickers, including corrupt government officials and police, who extort money from people in neighboring countries in exchange for smuggling them into Thailand and delivering them to places where they have been promised jobs. Under the new program, government or police officers who fail to carry out their duties or are involved in illegal activities will face swift punishment, which could include both disciplinary and criminal proceedings.

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