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Ler Moo fled his homeland after being used by the Burmese army as part of a human shield. He was rounded up with other villagers and forced to march in front of soldiers as they attacked one of the ethnic resistance movements that fight against the central government. After seeing two of his neighbours ripped apart by landmines, he waited for nightfall and escaped into the mountains and on into Thailand. Ler Moo now lives in a Thai village in constant fear of being deported back to Burma, where he believes he will be executed. Here he points to his home village, from where another 50 families have since fled.<br />
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There are around 1 million Burmese migrants living in Thailand. They exist in appalling poverty. Most are employed in backbreaking manual labour, on dangerous construction sites and fisheries or in karaoke bars and brothels.  They face constant harassment - wage exploitation, physical abuse, rape and even murder are commonplace and routinely go unpunished. Few have access to decent healthcare, to education or to legal protection. For the Burmese in Thailand, human rights are little more than a dream. And yet they choose to stay. Why? Because as bad as things are in Thailand, on the other side of the border, they are even worse.

Ler Moo fled his homeland after being used by the Burmese army as part of a human shield. He was rounded up with other villagers and forced to march in front of soldiers as they attacked one of the ethnic resistance movements that fight against the central government. After seeing two of his neighbours ripped apart by landmines, he waited for nightfall and escaped into the mountains and on into Thailand. Ler Moo now lives in a Thai village in constant fear of being deported back to Burma,...
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Copyright Rob Few