Massive Detentions Of Christian Refugees Underway In Thailand
By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent Worthy News
BANGKOK (Worthy News) – Pakistani Christians in Thailand reaching out to Worthy News say police forces are detaining dozens of believers, including minors.
“They go from building to building,” said a Christian woman whose name is known to Worthy News. “Please pray for us.”
Footage obtained by Worthy News on Sunday shows police outside and a crackdown on migrants in the Bangkok area. At least 10 Pakistani Christian families were taken into custody over the weekend, Christians said.
Security forces were trying to enter overcrowded apartment buildings. “I am stuck in my room,” said the source. “We are afraid to go outside where police are waiting to arrest us.”
She stressed she hoped people would come to their rescue. “Please help some families as they need food.” The ongoing raids came after mounting concern Thursday about the plight of six Pakistani Christian asylum seekers detained in Thailand, including an 11-year-old girl.
The British Asian Christian Association (BACA) said the girl’s mother seeks “help with removing her child from the Bangkok Immigration Detention Centre.
Thai authorities have been cracking down on thousands of Christian refugees, often from Pakistan and Myanmar, with many being locked up as cattle in overcrowded prisons, several sources told Worthy News earlier.
Those staying behind in overcrowded, filthy accommodations are, in several cases waiting for years before the United Nations refugee agency UNHCR takes up their claim.
The UNHCR claims it doesn’t have enough staff, though Christians have also complained of discrimination. “We have to stay inside, even going to church is difficult,” evangelist Maria Gill told Worthy News. “They don’t allow us to work,” leading to poverty among believers, she added.
Gill said she and her family have suffered for years in Thailand. “We even face risks when we go outside to go to church. My husband was mistreated while in detention.”
She is appealing to fellow believers worldwide to “help and pray.”
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