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ICC Note:

UNHCR says that it has only 8 staff to handle the more than 8,000 applications for asylum seekers in Thailand. Many of the asylum seekers are Christian from the Middle East, especially Pakistan, who are fleeing persecution. Thailand is not a party to the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees. Because of this, most asylum seekers must live like fugitives, hiding from the government. They are not allowed to work and spend much of their time in hiding. They often spend years in Thailand, waiting to find out if they will be granted asylum, or forced to return to the country they fled.

3/30/2017 Thailand (UCA News) – The United Nations refugee agency in Bangkok is struggling to cope with large numbers of refugee applications, resulting in claimants waiting extended periods to have applications processed.

Jennifer Bose, the U.N. High Commission for Refugees’ associate reporting officer in Bangkok, said the agency lacked sufficient funds to effectively deal with the large number of asylum cases in the Thai capital.

“While many countries have national systems and staff to cope, in Thailand the UNHCR does the processing with far fewer resources,” Bose told Al Jazeera.

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