Sunday, 18 November, 2018

Wild Boars Granted Thai Citizenship

Mongkol Boonpiam left one of the young soccer players who had been trapped for almost three weeks in a cave in northern Thailand receives an identity card denoting Thai citizenship from Somsak Kunkam Sheriff of Mae Sai during a ceremony in Mae Sai dist 4 Wild Boars Granted Thai Citizenship: Official
Jeannette Daniel | 09 August, 2018, 14:24

The story of the "Wild Boars" club has dominated headlines since the 12 boys and their 25-year-old coach went exploring in Tham Luang cave on June 23 and were trapped deep inside by rising floodwaters, setting off an global search dubbed "Mission Impossible".

Three of the young soccer players who were trapped in a cave in northern Thailand for nearly three weeks were granted Thai citizenship on Wednesday.

The footballers and the coach were among the 13 people who were trapped in the cave for nine days until their dramatic rescue.

In neighboring Myanmar, the frontier regions are dominated by ethnic minority groups, but underdevelopment and conflict make opportunities scarce.

The party was strolling inside the cave, following which they were trapped for nine days, before being found.

A dramatic, global rescue effort ended on July 10 when they were all brought out safely after an ordeal lasting more than two weeks.

More news: Australian golfer Jarrod Lyle passes away, aged 36

Three of the boys and Ekapol were considered stateless, even though they were born in Thailand, until local authorities checked their qualifications, including birth certificates, and approved their requests for Thai citizenship.

Somsak told AFP that the "Wild Boars incident" had nothing to do with the development and said they had merely qualified.

In a ceremony in Chiang Rai province Wednesday, the Mae Sai district chief approved citizenship for Ardoon Sam-aon, Mongkol Boompiam, Ponchai Khamluang, and assistant coach Ekkapol Ake Chanthawong.

The three boys obtained their birth certificates and used them as evidence to prove they were eligible to receive the Thai nationality, said Mr Somsak.

Citizenship requests for some twenty other people, majority children, were also approved, Somsak added. Some belong to "hill tribes" living in remote areas with limited access to information about nationality procedures, according to the United Nations refugee agency. Of that number 146,269 are younger than 18 years old.

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