MYANMAR / REFUGEE RETURN

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28-Oct-2016 00:02:05
Seventy-one refugees from Myanmar are returning home after decades in camps in Thailand through a pilot initiative led by the two governments. The initial group includes mainly ethnic Karen and Burmese refugees returning to locations that include Yangon, Tanintharyi region, Kayin, Mon and Rakhine states. UNHCR

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STORY: MYANMAR / REFUGEE RETURN
TRT: 2:05
SOURCE: UNHCR
RESTRICTIONS: PLEASE CREDIT UNHCR
LANGUAGES: BURMESE / NATS

DATELINE: 21 OCTOBER 2016, NUPO CAMP THAILAND / 24-27 OCTOBER 2016, MYAWADDY RECEPTION CENTRE, MYAWADDY BORDER CROSSING POINT, MYANMAR

SHOTLIST:

21 OCTOBER 2016 NUPO CAMP THAILAND

1. Aerial shot, Nupo refugee camp
2. Wide shot, refugees walking in camp
3. Wide shot, Thant Zin Maung shopping for packing bags in camp market, walking with sons
4. Wide shot, Thant Zin Maung and family packing with bags
5. SOUNDBITE (Burmese) Thant Zin Maung, Myanmar refugee:
“The reason I’m leaving the camp is for the education of my children and the health of my wife. Living here there’s only enough to eat. There’s no development. And now there’s reform going on in Myanmar. For our future I think that it will be better for us there. For this reason I’m leaving the camp.”
6. Med shot, Thant Zin Maung and family packing
7. Close up, Sign of Risk awareness training for potential returnees at Handicap International office in Nupo camp
8. Various shots, children in training for identifying mines
9. Wide shot, UNHCR staff counselling potential returnees (“protection counselling”) at VRC
10. SOUNDBITE (Burmese) Thant Zin Maung, Myanmar refugee:
“I have two feelings. Now having to return to my country of birth, I feel happy. But returning means taking a risk. Once we are there we don’t know how to struggle for our livelihood. It’s like a battle. We feel excited about returning there.”
11. Various shots, refugees boarding International Organization for Migration (IOM) trucks preparing to leave Nupo refugee camp, Thailand

24-27 OCTOBER 2016, MYAWADDY RECEPTION CENTRE, MYAWADDY BORDER CROSSING POINT, MYANMAR

12. Wide shot, inside Myawaddy border reception centre, Myanmar.
13. Various shots, refugees doing document and health checks at the reception centre
14. Med shot, Thant Zin Maung’s wife Ta Pyi Soe undergoing a medical check at the reception centre
15.Med shot, Thant Zin Maung and family
16. SOUNDBITE (Burmese) Thant Zin Maung, Myanmar refugee:
“In the future, my wife's health will be good. My children will become educated people. And I can be a businessman, that's what I hope.”
17. Close up, Thant Zin Maung’ s son closing curtain

STORYLINE:

Nupo camp in Thailand, just across the border from Myanmar.

A refuge for thousands since the ethnic unrest of the 1980s.

But now home beckons.

Thant Zin Maung has been in the camp for ten years. Now, with his wife and two young children, he packs to leave.

SOUNDBITE (Burmese) Thant Zin Maung, Myanmar refugee:
“The reason I’m leaving the camp is for the education of my children and the health of my wife. Living here there’s only enough to eat. There’s no development. And now there’s reform going on in Myanmar.”

Twenty families want to return. The Thai and Myanmar governments are organizing their trip.

The returnees are prepared for the risk of mines, explosives. The UN’s refugee agency (UNHCR) advises on conditions they will face at home.

SOUNDBITE (Burmese) Thant Zin Maung, Myanmar refugee:
“I have two feelings. Now having to return to my country of birth, I feel happy. But, returning means taking a risk. Once we are there we don’t know how to struggle for our livelihood. It’s like a battle.”

On October 26, with their entire lives packed into a few bags, the refugees cross back into their country, armed with hope and cash assistance from the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and other agencies.

At the Myawaddy border reception centre, they go through document and health checks. Their journey is far from finished. Thant Zin Maung and his family have many hours to go to reach his sister in Yangon.

SOUNDBITE (Burmese) Thant Zin Maung, Myanmar refugee:
“In the future, my wife's health will be good. My children will become educated people. And I can be a businessman, that's what I hope.”

UNHCR said that seventy-one refugees from Myanmar are returning home after decades in camps in Thailand through a pilot initiative led by the two governments. The initial group includes mainly ethnic Karen and Burmese refugees returning to locations that include Yangon, Tanintharyi region, Kayin, Mon and Rakhine states.

Thailand hosts more than 103,000 Myanmar refugees in nine border camps. Some of them have been in exile for more than 30 years.
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unifeed161028f
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1759380