Thai border forces patrol routes from Myanmar amid fears migrant workers will flee following military coup

Thai border forces were tightening security on Friday (February 12) amid the escalating unrest in neighbouring Myanmar. Footage shows cargo ships travelling from Myanmar to Thailand being checked in Ranong province in the south of the country, the busiest shipping route between two places. Officials fear a flood of migrant workers desperate to escape the political unrest following the ousting of well-liked leader Aung San Suu Kyi on February 1 in a military coup. Businesses in the former capital Yangon have suffered due to the ongoing protest marches, which are now in their eight consecutive day. Officials from the Port Security Control Center in Ranong said police and other units had increased sea patrols and checks on cargo ships. They said security had been tightened to prevent the illegal entry of Burmese workers fleeing the political situation. International pressure on Myanmar has grown, with U.S. Democrat politicians warning of sanctions on the country. Joe Biden made the announcement at the White House on Wednesday. Burma was governed by Britain from 1824 to 1948, during which time it became the second-wealthiest country in Southeast Asia but following independence was ruled by the military until 2011 when democratic reforms began.