Museum Opens at the Site of Former Refugee Camp

More than 23 years after the last Cambodians left the Khao I Dang refugee camp in Thailand, a museum about life at the site opened there on Monday, the U.N.’s refugee agency (UNHCR) said in a statement.

The Learning Center for the History of Khao I Dang in Thailand’s Sa Kaeo province will use photographs, videos and text to illustrate life at the refugee camp, where an estimated 235,000 people fled after the Khmer Rouge was overthrown in 1979.

Vivian Tan, regional press officer for UNHCR, said the museum was the brainchild of her agency, the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Thai Forestry Department, and would cater to Thai and foreign tourists alike.

She said it would feature the film “Bamboo City,” which includes footage of the Khao I Dang’s early days, along with a gallery of photos depicting daily life at the camp.

“In addition to an indoor exhibit,” she said, there was also “a partially completed replica of the Angkor Wat temple complex…that was left behind when artist/ceramist Yary Livan returned to Cambodia in 1992.”

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