The volatile situation in Myanmar following the 01 February 2021 coup has increased armed conflict and subsequent population displacement within and across borders, including in Thailand.
As of 22 August 2022, the Royal Thai Government (RTG) reports that there are no refugees remaining on the Thai side of the border. Since February 2021, the RTG estimates that some 22,000 Myanmar refugees have sought temporary safety in Thailand.
Refugees are sheltered in temporary safety areas (TSA), which are placed under the general jurisdiction of the Royal Thai Army by the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) established by the RTG in March 2021
SITUATION OVERVIEW ON THE THAI MYANMAR BORDER – AUGUST 2022
In Kayah State, armed clashes continued around Demoso and Loikaw since the Military scaled up its troops’ deployment in early August in an attempt to regain control of these areas. In Kayin State, clashes in Kawkareik Township have been reported between the Tatmadaw and Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA). Throughout August, daily battles reportedly took place between the Tatmadaw and the KNLA-led opposition forces – in the Karen National Union (KNU)-controlled areas of Dooplaya District (i.e., Brigade 6 controlled area), which is opposite Mae Sot, Phop Phra, and Umphang districts of Tak. The escalation of conflict around Myawaddy Township in late July and early August triggered displacement across the border into Thailand. On 29 July, the RTG reported new arrivals into Thailand caused by the resurgence of fighting in Myawaddy Town. The authorities recorded 244 individuals who sought safety in Thailand and were sheltered in one Temporary Safety Area (TSA) in Mor Ker Thai Temple, Valley sub-district, Pob Pra district, Tak province. All refugees reportedly returned to Myanmar once fighting subsided, and the TSA was officially closed on 13 August. In the Tanintharyi region, fighting intensified between the People Defense Force (PDF) and the Military in August, especially around Dawei Township.
As of 29 August, the total number of internally displaced people (IDPs) in Myanmar displaced since 1 February is 974,400, of whom 283,800 are in the southeast provinces – Kayah, Shan, Kayin, Mon States, and Tanintharyi and Bago regions. Most of the newly displaced were in Kayin State, where 1,100 people sought safety in the jungle in Thandaungyyi Township due to airstrikes. The number of IDPs continued to increase in Tanintharyi Region due to general insecurity. Local media reported that 700 people were displaced to the jungle nearby. In Kayah State, about 210 IDPs in Nyaung Shwe Township were able to return to Loikaw.