Deported monks shock Mon in exile
Meanwhile, Monland Restoration Council in USA also sent a letter to the Royal Thai Government requesting fair treatment to Buddhist monks. The Mon communities around the world are shocked and deeply upset to hear that Mon Buddhist monks were arrested and disrobed by the Thai authorities.
In the statement, the MNC perceives that all monks have a right to be offered refuge because they are seeking a peaceful place to practice Buddhism and should be freed from persecutions and oppressions in their homeland – like the Dalai Lama being offered refuge in India. Mon monks are oppressed by the dictatorship and face unfair regulations laid upon them, such as: they are forbidden to follow religious practices peacefully and are ordered not to teach or learn Mon literature, in short, Mon Buddhist monks are persecuted and harassed constantly by the Burmese military junta.
“The Thai government surely is not thinking properly, having authorities disrobe Buddhist monks is in itself a serious act against not only the Mons but jeopardizes the Buddhist relationships between the Mon and the Thai, such impractical action taken by the Thai government may affect future relationships between the Mon and Thai and we will request that the Thai government review their actions immediately”, adding that, “the Thai government must protect Mon monks until such time they able to return to their homeland”, says Nai Ong, a Mon exile who has visited the community over the past decade.
The Thai police arrested Buddhist monks at Bangkadee, a well-known Thai-Mon community, on August 26 and over thirty Mon monks including two political refugees were disrobed and deported to the Thai-Burma border. The Thai authorities announced that 189 monasteries in 9 districts are to be searched for illegal entry to the Kingdom.