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Migrant Workers Repatriated

Khmer Times Share:
More than 150 migrant workers from Cambodia were sent home yesterday from Thailand. Supplied

More than 150 Cambodian migrant workers were repatriated from Thailand through Battambang’s Kamrieng Sampov Loun districts on Tuesday, according to local media.
Kamrieng district Military Police Deputy Commander Siek Sanith, who could not be reached for additional comment yesterday, said 149 illegal migrant workers including 37 women were deported from Thailand through Kamrieng’s Daung checkpoint, while 15 others including five women traveled through Sampov Loun’s Phnom Dey checkpoint.  
Despite this account, Phnom Dey checkpoint chief Srey Sokhon said no migrant workers had traveled through his checkpoint in the past few days. Neither Kamrieng nor Sampov Loun district police officials could comment on the repatriations as they did not have access to the reports.
Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesman Chum Sounry could not be reached for comment on the repatriations yesterday.
Moeun Tola, the executive director of the Center for Alliance of Labor and Human Rights, said multiple factors push Cambodians to illegally migrate to find work in Thailand.
Insufficient employment in Cambodia, low wages for the jobs that do exist in the Kingdom and the high price of work permits to go abroad were all drivers of illegal migration.
The Ministry of Labor said there are now about 700,000 legal migrant workers in Thailand alone, while it claims to have no statistics on the number of illegal migrant workers.
Mr. Tola said the number of illegal Cambodian migrant workers in Thailand is similar to the number of legal workers, meaning that nearly 10 percent of Cambodia’s entire population is now working in Thailand.

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