CityNews – Angelina Jolie visited refugee camps in Northern Thailand last week in honour of World Refugee Day that fell on Friday, 20 June. The actress, who is well-known for her humanitarian work spanning all corners of the globe, was a UN Goodwill Ambassador for over a decade, and is currently a Special Envoy for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
Working for UNHCR: Angelina with children at the Tham Hin camp in May 2002.
Jolie visited Ban Mai Nai Soi camp in Mae Hong Son to spread awareness about the prevalence of refugee issues, stating in her visit that the failures of international communities to prevent armed conflict has been a main contributor to a surge in refugee numbers, and that “The only answer is to devote greater efforts and resources to addressing conflict worldwide – there are no humanitarian solutions to political problems”. She has long been an advocate for refugees and immigrants, and has fronted many campaigns which aim to help and protect refugees, women, children, and victims of political struggles and war.
Ban Mai Nai Soi currently houses 11,890 Karen refugees that have fled armed conflicts in Myanmar; the Thai government, however, does not recognize those in camps as refugees but as displaced persons.
Angelina left Chiang Mai last friday night on a private plane to an undisclosed destination.
Here’s Angelina’s UNHCR Thailand journal from her previous visits to Thailand, where she has met with landmine victims, AIDS orphans, and child soldiers.