This report looks at the lives both of refugees inside the camps on the Thai-Burma border as well as of Burmese living outside of the camps, many of whom are, in fact, refugees, even though they have not been officially recognized as such, in large part because they are precluded from lodging refugee claims with the government or with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). This report also looks at the situation of refugees and asylum seekers from other nationalities and their difficulties in finding predictable and sufficient protection in Thailand. Finally, the report looks at the situation of all migrants in Thailand, including refugees and asylum seekers, in their encounters with police and other authorities, including when faced with being detained in Thailand’s Immigration Detention Centers (IDCs) and with deportation or expulsion from the country. Starting in January 2004, the Thai government stopped allowing UNHCR to conduct refugee status determination interviews for Burmese refugees and directed that all Burmese refugees should live in the Thai-Burma border camps. The government has refused to screen or register all but a small fraction of the new arrivals since 2004, leaving over a third of the camp residents unregistered, and thus regarded as illegal.
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