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US Eying Thai Border Exodus ‘Closely,’ Official Says

Cambodian migrant workers wait for document process as they prepare to migrate back to Cambodia at the Aranyaprathet Police station in Sa Kaew June 15, 2014.
The US Embassy is watching closely the exodus of Cambodian workers from Thailand, an embassy official said Thursday.

Some 200,000 Cambodians have fled Thailand since the May 22 coup and subsequent rumors of a crackdown on illegal workers there.

US Embassy spokesman Sean McIntosh said the embassy here is in contact with the embassy in Bangkok, as well as human rights groups, and is “closely monitoring the situation.”

Cambodians have fled Thailand via the Poipet border in Bantey Meanchey province, or via the coastal province of Koh Kong, which also borders Thailand.

“There are now approximately 200,000 people who have passed across the border at different places,” Joe Lowry, a spokesman for the International Organization for Migration, in Bangkok, said Thursday. “All are getting enough food and water, and they are moving across the border good and quickly.”