Thai teen says Burmese soldiers killed his father
A 14-year-old boy from Ranong who claims that Burmese soldiers killed his father during a raid, is asking for the remains to be returned to him.
Marque A. Rome
Monday 20 August 2012, 07:09AM
Wongsakorn Pawo, 44, was shot when two companies of Burmese rounded up 92 Thais accused of encroaching on Burmese territory bordering Kraburi district in Ranong.
The boy said Thais had founded a village in the area more than three years ago, and criticised authorities for failing to make clear to inhabitants the area’s status.
The incident occurred on June 6 at a village called Ban Inthaninkwan. Three men who escaped capture said soldiers surrounded and then began threatening the villagers.
They said warning shots were fired for almost an hour. Later reports said people were also shot.
Thai authorities said they could not verify the latter report, as “the Burmese military provide no information”.
About 300 families – mostly rubber planters – were said to live in the area, which was “not properly demarcated,” according to a report in the Bangkok Post. The Burmese seized backhoes, tractors, and pick-up trucks in the raid.
Fourteen-year-old Chaiyamorn Pawo is a 9th-grader at Kao Yaowarat Patana school. “The Burmese soldiers took my father and stepmother, Ya, in the raid,” he explained.
“I have just been told by relatives, who went to visit my stepmother at Victoria Point (Koh Sawng), where she has been incarcerated, that I needn’t wait anymore for father because he was shot on July 4.”
Many of the 300 Thai families living in the village had built their own wooden homes, had rubber and palm plantings, a temple and various shops.
“My father built his house and planted rubber more than three years ago,” said Chaiyamorn.
“The trees were almost ready for harvesting latex in commercial quantities.”
He said all his father’s belongings – including cash, pick-up, and motorcycle – were seized by Burmese troops.
“After my father and stepmother were captured, I tried calling my father many times, but every time the person answering was Burmese and we didn’t understand each other,” Chaiyamorn said.
“I have pleaded with the relevant agencies for help in retrieving my father’s remains so his funeral can be held in Thailand – in the village of his birth.”