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16 North Koreans Arrested After Crossing From Vientiane

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16 North Koreans arrested after crossing from Vientiane

By The Nation

NONG KHAI -- Marine police patrolling the Mekong River yesterday arrested 16 people from North Korea trying to illegally enter Thailand.

Quoting one of the suspects - Lee Kwang Su, police said they had travelled to Thailand to try to get to South Korea, after paying smugglers of unknown nationality around Bt200,000.

Pol Lt Colonel Atthawut Onsub, chief of Nong Khai marine police, said it was the first time illegal entrants had been arrested in Nong Khai, instead of Chiang Saen in the far north, where such refugees normally arrived, as it was a regular smuggling route.

"This is possibly because of heightened operations against human trafficking rackets in the North," he said.

Yesterday's arrests were made thanks to tip-offs. The North Koreans travelled from Vientiane by cars and crossed the Mekong River at dawn in a long-tailed boat in two trips.

The other 15 suspects were not identified. They have been charged with illegal entry and will be deported.

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-- The Nation 2010-03-23

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Hopefully deported to South Korea and not the north as the punishment there for daring to try and escape the regime is execution.

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'two longtail boats at dawn' ??!! that's not very good smuggling work! roaring across the mekong at one of the busiest times of day seems very foolish. I would have swam across at night during a rain storm.

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Wow!!! Talk about taking the long way around!!! I used to live in northern China near the N Korean border, and the refugees are everywhere there. The running joke used to be that N Korea was China's Mexico. Sad but true. I hope these people can make their way to the friendlier half of that country instead of getting sent back to the hellhole that is the north.

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Good luck to them for trying. Hope they get sent back to S.Korea but then wouldn't that start a precedent and open the gates to others? can't help feeling for these guys.

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This has been ongoing in Thailand for quite a few years now. They make the trip because they will get sent to South Korea whereas, my understanding is, if they go to China they will probably just get sent back to N Korea. I know for a fact previous refugees have been taken in by the S Koreans after being arrested in Thailand

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This has been ongoing in Thailand for quite a few years now. They make the trip because they will get sent to South Korea whereas, my understanding is, if they go to China they will probably just get sent back to N Korea. I know for a fact previous refugees have been taken in by the S Koreans after being arrested in Thailand

I agree, having been through this much to get escape that despotic country, I hope they are sent to S. Korea.

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quote:

Yesterday's arrests were made thanks to tip-offs.

Thanks to these "tipsters" these people will definitely face execution if sent back to N. Korea.

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