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Sea gypsies mass in Phuket to voice threats to traditional way of life

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Koh Panyi in Thailand, inhabited by Muslim sea gypsies

Koh Panyi, a Muslim floating village in Phang Nga Bay. Photo: Asfreeas / Wikimedia Commons.

PHUKET: About 1,000 sea gypsies from along the Andaman Coast gathered at Phuket’s Rawai Beach yesterday (Nov 20) to air their grievances about the slew of problems the once-sea-faring nomads face in modern Thailand today.

Chief of the sea gypsies’ concerns is forced relocation through court-ordered evictions to uphold claims to land that the indigenous people had long lived on uncontested, explained Sangsom Harnthalay, who heads the sea gypsy community on the popular tourist island of Koh Lipe to the south in Satun.

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By The Phuket News

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