Thai Refugee Camp Locked Down After Outbreak

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By Kantarawaddy Times

An outbreak is affecting a Karenni refugee camp in Thailand, which has been sealed off and tested by the authorities since late last year. So far, 165 infections have been detected at the camp in Thailand’s Mae Hong Son province and all have been quarantined.

Khoon Phillip, coordinator of the Karenni Health Department (KHD), told Kantarawaddy Times that Karenni Refugee Camp 1 camp has been under lockdown since 26 January, when the first transmission was detected. ”All shops (inside the camp) have been closed and after two weeks we’ll retest those who tested positive and not let them back home until they test negative for COVID-19.”

Working closely with the camp authorities, he said they’ve issued a stay-at-home order, which is working as everyone is afraid of contracting the virus.

The first carrier, who had a travel history, suffered a respiratory illness five days after his return. His family was also infected.

Of the 20 wards in the camp, the KHD has already tested 17.

“We’re now analysing the data and trying to understand why COVID-19 has spread in the camp,” Khoon Phillip explained. Of the 8,000 refugees, more than 5,000 have been vaccinated with Sinopharm.

KDP is preparing to vaccinate the many internally displaced persons, who’ve sought refuge in Karenni National Progressive Party (KNPP) controlled area in Burma since the military coup a year ago. KNPP’s military wing, the Karenni Army, is fighting with the junta in Karenni and Shan states.

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