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Burmese Refugees Depart for US

Officials in Thailand say at least 47 Burmese refugees have left a camp on the Thai-Burma border this week to begin life in the United States.

The officials say the group of ethnic Karen refugees are the latest to leave the Than Him camp since the resettlement operation began August 15. The U.S. government has agreed to allow at least 2,500 of the refugees to resettle in the United States by the end of this year.

The refugees fled to escape fighting between Karen guerrillas and the Burmese army. Some have been in the overcrowded camp for more than 20 years.

The United States issued a waiver to its immigration laws in May to allow many of the refugees to apply for resettlement in the U.S.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.