Thai authorities, on August 29, returned to Laos 30 Hmong families from the Ban Huay Nam Kham detention camp in Thailand's Phetchabun province. Thai officials handed over the 118 refugees to Laotian authorities at the Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge, saying the group returned willingly and voluntarily.
The latest returnees bring the total number of Hmong refugees who have been repatriated to Laos since early this year to more than 1,400, leaving behind some 6,100 fellow refugees who refuse to return to Laos.
Those refugees and hundreds of others who have reportedly left the camp and are now hiding in the jungles say they fear for their safety if they are sent back to Laos. They are afraid the Lao government will persecute them because their ancestors had CIA connections.
Listen to Songrit's report for further details in Lao.