One wife rule halts Hmong immigration

The United States' reluctance to accept polygamy has emerged as a sticking point in plans to resettle more than 14,000 ethnic Hmong people.

    Thousands of Hmong fled Laos at the end of the Vietnam war

    Officials from the city of St Paul, Minnesota, began talks on Monday to finalise reception for thousands who fled communist Laos to find shelter in a Thai temple.

    But Mayor Randy Kelly's monogamy clause has turned out to be a big problem.

    General Pallop Pinmanee, of Thailand's Internal Security Operations Command has said he will meet with Kelly to discuss the only-one-wife condition.
    "Many Hmongs have several wives. How can we separate family members?"
    Pallop said a further "problem is there are about 1000 senior Hmongs who don't want to go to the US. They want to stay at Tham Krabok which we can not allow."
    Delegation visit

    Tham Krabok, a Buddhist temple in central Thailand, houses about 14,400 refugees who were recently accepted for entry into the United States. More than half are destined for St Paul. 

    "There are about 1000 senior Hmongs who don't want to go to the US. They want to stay at Tham Krabok which we can not allow"

    General Pallop Pinmanee, Thailand's Internal Security Operations Command

    A 20-member US delegation is scheduled to visit the camp on Tuesday, where residents are already undergoing tests to prove they are in good health and not addicted to drugs.
    A US embassy official said discussions were going well, but the delegation was now settling down to the "nitty gritty" of the resettlement process. 
    Why the US?

    Minnesota has taken in tens of thousands of Hmong refugees in recognition of their help to US forces during the Vietnam war and the minority's subsequent persecution.
    The Hmong at Tham Krabok are among the last of 300,000 who fled to Thailand after the communist takeover in Laos in 1975.

    Their presence has long been a thorny issue between Vientiane and Bangkok.



    Meet the deported nurse aiding asylum seekers at US-Mexico border

    Meet the deported nurse helping refugees at the border

    Francisco 'Panchito' Olachea drives a beat-up ambulance around Nogales, taking care of those trying to get to the US.

    The rise of Pakistan's 'burger' generation

    The rise of Pakistan's 'burger' generation

    How a homegrown burger joint pioneered a food revolution and decades later gave a young, politicised class its identity.

    'We will cut your throats': The anatomy of Greece's lynch mobs

    The brutality of Greece's racist lynch mobs

    With anti-migrant violence hitting a fever pitch, victims ask why Greek authorities have carried out so few arrests.