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UPDATED: Aung San Suu Kyi visits Thailand

Migrant workers wave to Myanmar Foreign Minister and State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi during a meeting at Talad Talay Thai in Muang district in Samut Sakhon on Thursday. (Reuters photo)

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Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi arrives in Thailand Thursday for three-day visit. Visits to migrant workers & refugee camps & bilateral talks on Dawei, migrants & refugees on agenda during trip.


Aung San Suu Kyi meets migrant workers at port town outside Bangkok


Heavy rain could not deter thousands of Myanmar workers from greeting their idol Aung San Suu Kyi at a market in Samut Sakhon on Thursday.

Myanmar citizens working in Mahachai packed Talad Talay Thai in the port town of Samut Sakhon hours before Mrs. Suu Kyi came from Bangkok to meet them.

They braved the heavy rain and chanted  "Me Suu" (Mother Suu) as their icon arrived.

She waved to her compatriots before going inside the meeting hall to talk to their representatives.

The de facto Myanmar leader said in the meeting room that she hoped for better understanding between people of the two countries.

She was welcomed at Suvarnabhumi airport by Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak.

She will meet Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha on Friday with refugees, labour issues and development projects between the two countries on the agenda.

Ms Suu Kyi will deliver the keynote speech at the "Myanmar, Asean and the World" forum at the Foreign Ministry before going to Government House tommorrow.

Her plan to visit the Tham Hin refugee camp in Suan Pheung district in Ratchaburi before wrapping up the visit on Saturday has been cancelled.

(Source: Bangkok Post Breaking News here)

Aung San Suu Kyi arrives at Suvarnabhumi airport to begin a 3-day official visit to Thailand (Source: Foreign Ministry).


Aung San Suu Kyi visits Thailand

AFP News agency

Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi arrives Thursday in Thailand for a three-day visit.

She is expected to be garlanded by her adoring compatriots, hundreds of thousands of whom have sought work and sanctuary from war across the border in Thailand.

This will be Mrs Suu Kyi's highest profile overseas visit since her pro- democracy party took power in April, ending nearly half a century of military domination.

Her government has sparked hopes for a new era of prosperity in Myanmar that could eventually convince the army of low-paid Myanmar labourers in Thailand to return home.

[UPDATE: After her arrival on Thursday, there have been many reports of lack of media access and even access by her Myanmar supporters to the venues she has planned to visit (see here as well as here, here & here).]


Bilateral talks between Myanmar and Thailand on issues of mutual concern are on the agenda during her visit.

The 71-year-old Mrs. Suu Kyi is officially Myanmar's foreign minister and state counsellor, but also the de facto leader of her country despite a military - era constitution that bars her from the presidency.

A bilateral agreement on Myanmar migrant workers in Thailand is expected to be signed.

The special economic zone (SEZ) of the Myanmar port of Dawei to be connected to Thailand and the rest of Asean by roads and future rail lines, is another likely topic for discussion.  
Another issue likely be discussed is the approximately 120,000 refugees (displaced persons) who have sought refuge in Thailand over the years, often fleeing from war in the Karen state of Myanmar that borders Thailand's Tak province and the town of Mae Sot.  

Children of Myanmar workers in Thailand get dressed up to greet Suu Kyi. PHOTO BY SEKSAN ROJJANAMETAKUN


As Myanmar's democracy champion, Mrs Suu Kyi is expected to receive a rock star welcome during a visit to a major fish market where many Myanmar migrant workers work in Samut Sakhon Thursday afternoon.

Mrs Suu Kyi was received by rapturous crowds when she visited the seaport four years ago for the World Economic Forum in Bangkok.

The seat of Thailand's huge seafood industry and home to more than 100,000 Myanmar labourers, Samut Sakhon has been battered by accusations of slavery and other labour abuses.

Seeking to escape poverty at home, some one million registered Myanmar migrant workers form the backbone of Thailand's manual labour workforce.

Young Myanmar students in Thailand apply traditional sandalwood (Thanakha) to face.

Many others work illegally, with some estimates putting the total number of Myanmar nationals in Thailand at three million.

Rights groups say migrants are often exploited by unscrupulous officials, human trafficking gangs and employment agencies who charge huge sums to get them poorly paid work.

"They all want to go home, but they are just waiting for the economic situation to improve significantly," explained Andy Hall, a prominent migrant rights activist who works in Thailand.

Children of Myanmar workers in Thailand get dressed up in school uniforms wait to greet Suu Kyi. PHOTO BY SEKSAN ROJJANAMETAKUN


She is scheduled to travel to a refugee camp in Ratchaburi province on Saturday.

It is one of nearly a dozen camps that line the two nations' border and hold more than 100,000 refugees who have fled conflict in Myanmar.

Many are ethnic Karen who were displaced by a long-running war with Myanmar's army. The violence abated following a 2012 ceasefire, but conflict with other ethnic rebel groups continues.

Thailand officially does not accept refugees or naturalise the displaced in the refugee camps -- although many have been born in Thailand.

[UPDATE: Refugee camp visit reportedly cancelled, see here]

School id card of young student waiting for Mrs. Suu Kyi's arrival.


But Mrs Suu Kyi is not scheduled to visit any of the Thai centres holding some 400 Rohingya, a Muslim group which has fled poverty and persecution in western Myanmar.

She has so far disappointed campaigners who hoped she would throw her moral weight behind the stateless minority group.

Rohingya Thailand Group holds a media conference on the problems of the Rohingya people at the Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand in Bangkok. Police stopped it, saying it would disrupt a visit by Myanmar's State Counsellor and Foreign Minister Aung San Suu Kyi. The group's organiser was later allowed to make a , but no questions were allowed. PHOTO BY TAWATCHAI KEMGUMNERD

Young Myanmar man named Than Saw Min proudly shows a picture of Myanmar president Htin Kyaw and State Counsellor and Suu Kyi drawn on his chest, as he waits for Suu Kyi's arrival in Samut Sakhon. PHOTO BY PATIPAT JANTHONG

Myanmar migrants wear T-shirts carrying a picture of Suu Kyi, as supporters gather ahead of her visit to the fish market in Samut Sakhon. PHOTO BY AFP

The national flag of Myanmar is raised at Government House grounds to welcome State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi, who is on a three-day visit to Thailand. PHOTO BY THITI WANNAMONTHA


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abate : to become less strong - เบาบาง, ทำให้สิ้นสุด

abuse (noun): cruel, violent or unfair treatment, especially of someone who does not have the power to prevent it - การข่มเหง, การปฏิบัติไม่ดีต่อ

access (verb): to allow entry to a building or place; to be able to get to something - ทำให้เข้าสู่ได้

accusation : a statement that someone has done something wrong or illegal even though this has not been proved - ข้อกล่าวหา

activist : someone who takes part in activities that are intended to achieve political or social change, especially someone who is a member of an organisation - นักกิจกรรม

adj (noun): connected with soldiers or the armed forces - ในทางทหาร,เกี่ยวกับทหาร

adoring : showing great love and admiration - อย่างรักและบูชา

agenda : a list of things that people will discuss at a meeting - ระเบียบวาระ

agenda : a list of things to be discussed - กำหนดการ, วาระ

agreement (noun): an arrangement, a promise or a contract made with somebody - ข้อตกลง, คำสัญญา

approximately : used to show that something is almost, but not completely, accurate or correct - โดยประมาณ

backbone (noun): the main part of something that makes it successful and strong - แกนนำ, กระดูกสันหลัง, เสาหลัก, ที่พึ่ง, เครื่องยึดเหนี่ยว, หลัก, ที่ปรึกษา

bar : to say that something must not happen - ห้าม

battered : badly damaged - ที่ถูกทำลายยับเยิน

bilateral : involving two groups or countries - สองข้าง, เกี่ยวกับกลุ่มทางการเมืองสองกลุ่ม

border : the official line separating two areas, regions or countries - เขตแดน อาณาเขต

brave : to deal with an unpleasant or difficult situation in order to achieve something - กล้าที่จะเผชิญกับ

cancel (verb): to decide to stop something that has been arranged from taking place - ยกเลิก

ceasefire : an agreement to top fighting for a period of time, especially in order to discuss permanent peace - การหยุดยิง

century : a period of one hundred years - ศตวรรษ

champion : to publicly support a set of beliefs, political aims, or a group of people - สนับสนุน

chant : to keep shouting or singing a word or phrase many times - โห่ร้อง, โห่ร้องต้อนรับ, ร้องเพลง

citizen : someone who has the right to live permanently in a particular country - พลเมือง 

compatriots : people who are from the same country as you are - คนชาติเดียวกัน

concern : a worry - ความกังวล

conference (noun): a large official meeting, usually lasting for a few days, at which people with the same work or interests come together to discuss their views - การประชุมร่วม

conflict : an angry disagreement between people or groups - ความขัดแย้ง

connected : linked - เชื่อมต่อ เชื่อมโยง

constitution : the set of laws and basic principles that a country in governed by - รัฐธรรมนูญ

continue : happening or existing for a period of time without interruption - ซึ่งติดต่อกัน, ซึ่งต่อเนื่องกัน

convince : to make somebody/yourself believe that something is true; to persuade somebody to do something - ทำให้เชื่อ, ทำให้แน่ใจ, ชักจูง

counsellor : a person who helps solve problems - ผู้ให้คำปรึกษา

de facto : in reality; in fact - อย่างแท้จริง, อันที่จริง, ตามความจริง

deputy : a person whose rank is immediately below that of the leader of an organisation - รอง

despite (prep): used to show that something happened or is true although something else might have happened to prevent it; used to show that somebody did not intend to do the thing mentioned - ถึงอย่างไรก็ตาม, ทั้ง ๆ ที่

deter : to make someone decide not to do something - ขัดขวาง, ยับยั้ง, ป้องกัน

discussion : conversation; talk - การสนทนา, การอภิปราย

displaced : (of people or animals) forced to leave their home, especially because of war or a natural disaster - ซึ่งออกจากที่อยู่ไป, ซึ่งย้ายที่

disrupt : to interrupt something and prevent it from continuing by creating a problem - ได้รับการกระทบกระเทือน  ถูกทำให้หยุดชะงัก

domination : control - การครอบคลุม การควบคุม

employment agencies : companies that find work for people as a service -

era : a period of time that has a particular quality or character - ยุค, สมัย

escape (verb): to get away from a place; to leave a place where you are in danger - หนี

estimate : an amount that you guess or calculate using the information available - ประมาณการ

ethnic : of a group of people with the same culture or traditions - กลุ่มชาติพันธุ์

eventually : at the end of a period of time or at the end of a process - ในที่สุด

expect (verb): to think or believe that something will happen or that somebody will do something - คาด, คาดว่า, คาดการณ์

exploit : to use unfairly for your own benefit - เอาเปรียบ, หาประโยชน์ใส่ตัว

flee : to leave a place or person quickly because you are afraid of possible danger - หนี อพยพ

foreign minister : the minister in charge of maintaining relations with other countries and looking after the interests of its citizens living abroad who heads the Foreign Ministry or - รัฐมนตรีว่าการต่างประเทศ

Foreign Ministry (noun): Ministry of Foreign Affairs; the ministry in charge of maintaining relations with other countries and looking after the interests of its citizens living abroad. - กระทรวงการต่างประเทศ

gang (noun): a group of criminals who work together; a group of young people who spend time together causing trouble - แก๊ง, กลุ่มโจร

garland : a circle made of flowers worn around the neck or head as a decoration - พวงมาลัย

hope (noun): a belief that something you want will happen; something that you wish for - ความหวัง

huge : very large - ใหญ่โต

human trafficking : the trade of humans, most commonly for the purpose of sexual slavery, forced labor or commercial sexual exploitation for the trafficker or others (Source: Wikipedia) - การค้ามนุษย์

icon : someone who is very famous and who people think represents a particular idea - ดาราหรือบุคคลผู้มีชื่อเสียงที่เป็นตัวแทนของสิ่งใดสิ่งหนึ่ง

idol : a person or thing that is loved and admired very much - คนหรือสิ่งที่ได้รับความชื่นชมหรือคลั่งไคล้อย่างมาก

improve : to get better - ดีขึ้น

issue : a problem that needs to be considered - ประเด็น

issue : a subject that people discuss or argue about - ประเด็น

keynote : the most important speech at an event -

labour : work, especially hard physical work - งานที่ใช้พละกำลัง

labourer : a person whose job involves hard physical work that is not skilled, especially work that is done outdoors - กรรมกร, ผู้ใช้แรงงาน

lack of : when there is not enough of something - ขาด

leader : the person in charge of a group of people; who manages them and "leads" them in doing some activity - ผู้นำ

major : very large or important - สำคัญมาก

manual (adj.): by hand, not done automatically - ด้วยมือ

manual labour : low-level work or labour (manual = work with your hands) -

media : radio, television, newspaper, the Internet, considered as a group - สื่อ

migrant : someone who travels to another place or country in order to find work (an immigrant is someone who comes to live in a country from another country) - ผู้อพยพ, คนงานต่างถิ่น

migrant worker : someone who travels to another place or country in order to find work - คนงานต่างถิ่น

minority : of a part of a population that is different in race, religion or culture form most of the population - ชนกลุ่มน้อย

moral : relating to right and wrong and the way that people should behave - ทางศีลธรรม, เกี่ยวกับความรู้สึกผิดชอบชั่วดี

mutual : felt or done in the same way by each of two or more people - ซึ่งกันและกัน, ร่วมกัน, ทั้งสองฝ่าย

naturalise (verb): to make somebody who was not born in a particular country a citizen of that country - แปลงสัญชาติ, โอนสัญชาติ

officially : publicly and by somebody who is in a position of authority - อย่างเป็นทางการ

officials : people who have the power to make decisions or enforce the law - เจ้าหน้าที่ผู้มีอำนาจ

persecution : unfair or cruel treatment over a long period of time because of race, religion, or political beliefs - การกลั่นแกล้ง, การข่มเหง, การข่มเหงรังแก

poverty : the condition of being extremely poor - ความจน

presidency (noun): the job of being president of a country or an organization; the period of time somebody holds this job - ตำแหน่งประธานาธิบดี

pro- : supporting some issue, being for something, opposite of "anti-" -

profile : the general impression that somebody/something gives to the public and the amount of attention they receive - ชื่อเสียง

prominent : important and well known - สำคัญ, มีชื่อเสียง, เด่น

prosperity : the situation of being successful and having a lot of money - ความมั่งคั่ง

province : one of many divisions of the government of a country into smaller parts - จังหวัด

rail line : a track with rails on which trains run; a system of tracks, together with the trains that run on them - เส้นทางของรถไฟ, ระบบทางรถไฟ, รางรถไฟ

rapturous : full of extreme pleasure and happiness or excitement - ซึ่งปลาบปลื้มสูงสุด

rebel : a person who opposes somebody in authority over them within an organization, a political party, etc; a person who does not like to obey rules or who does not accept normal standards of behaviour - คนขัดขืน, คนหัวรั้น

refuge : a place where you go to protect yourself from something dangerous or threatening - ที่ลี้ภัย ที่หลบภัย

refugee : someone who leaves their country or living place, especially during a war or other threatening event - ผู้ลี้ภัย

registered (adj): to be on an official list; to be on an official list of names of people who are allowed to do something, e.g., vote, study, sell something, stay in a hotel etc - ซึ่งลงทะเบียนไว้

representative : someone who has been chosen or elected by a person or group to vote, give opinions, or make decisions for them - ผู้แทน

sanctuary : a safe place, especially one where people who are having problems of some kind - ที่หลบภัย

scheduled : planned to happen at a particular time or day - ตามตารางเวลา

sign : sign agreement, put your signature on an agreement; agree to do something in exchange for something such as money - เซ็นสัญญา

significantly : in an important way - อย่างมีความหมาย, อย่างสำคัญ

slavery : the practice of owning people , of having "slaves" - ความเป็นทาส, การเป็นทาส

spark : to make something happen - ก่อให้เกิด

state : government - รัฐบาล

stateless : not having citizenship in any country - ไร้สัญชาติ

statement : something that you say or write that gives information or an opinion - แถลงการณ์, คำแถลง

supporter (noun): a person who helps and supports a person, organization or idea - ผู้สนับสนุน

talks (noun): negotiations; when two sides that disagree get together and "talk" to reach some agreement - การเจรจา, การเจรจาต่อรอง

topic : a subject that you talk, write or learn about - เรื่อง, หัวข้อ

unscrupulous : behaving in a way that is dishonest or unfair in order to get what you want - ที่ไม่ซื่อสัตย์

venue : a place where a public event or meeting takes place - สถานที่ชุมนุม

wave : to move your hand or arm from side to side in the air in order to attract attention, say hello, etc - โบกมือ, โบกเพื่อทักทายหรือส่งสัญญาณ

welcome : to be pleased to receive or accept something - รับด้วยความยินดี

workforce : all the people who work for a particular company, organization, country, etc. - แรงงาน, คนทำงาน

wrapping up : finishing - ทำให้เสร็จสิ้น

zone : an area that has an important or typical feature; an area where a particular activity is allowed or not allowed - พื้นที่, บริเวณ, เขต


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