Angelina Jolie traded the glitz and glamour of the movie awards season for a visit to Thailand and urged the Thai government to respect the human rights of Myanmar's Rohinyga boat people , a U.N. spokesman said Friday.
As goodwill ambassador to the United Nations Refugee Agency, UNHCR, Angelina went to Thailand on Wednesday to appeal to the country's government to provide Myanmar (Burma) refugees living in confined camps more freedom after they were pushed out to sea in recent weeks.
I was saddened to meet a 21-year-old woman who was born in a refugee camp, who has never even been out of the camp and is now raising her own child in a camp, Jolie said in a statement via the UNHCR after visiting Ban Mai Nai Soi camp, home to more than 18,000 refugees.
I hope we can work with the Thai authorities to speed up the government admissions process and that you will not be forced to go back to Burma if danger remains, said Jolie.
While there, Jolie and her partner, Brad Pitt, toured one of several camps on Wednesday along the Thai-Myanmar border sheltering refugees from Myanmar's military regime.
U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees spokeswoman Kitt McKinsey told AP Television News that it was a coincidence that Jolie's visit came just as the plight of the Rohingyas was catching world attention.
She was extremely touched by the plight of the Rohingya people. She expressed the hope that the human rights of the Rohingya people will be respected just as the human rights of everyone in the world should be respected, McKinsey said.
The actress and mother of six is due back in Hollywood later this month to attend the Oscars where she is up for nomination in the Best actress category for her role in Clint Eastwood's The Changeling.