Uyghur refugees deserve freedom

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November 20, 2018 | Bangkok Post | By Omer Kanat

On Aug 1, 2018, Bilal, a 27-year-old Uyghur refugee, died in a Thai immigration detention facility, where he had been held since March 2014. Thai police and volunteers from a local NGO helped with funeral arrangements and Bilal was buried in an Islamic cemetery far from his family and homeland.

Along with countless other refugees who have died fleeing their persecutors, Bilal’s story could have been different. He should have been given a chance at a new life. However, it is not too late for the 49 Uyghur refugees still detained in Thailand. Over four and half years since their capture, the Thai government should release these Uyghurs to a safe third country.

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