S. Korea urges caution in Golden Triangle region amid increasing crimes

The foreign ministry on Wednesday urged caution against increasing cases of employment fraud in the "Golden Triangle" region straddling Thailand, Myanmar and Laos. The ministry urged South Koreans to take extra caution in the area as cases involving luring people with the promise of high profits, then kidnapping and forcing them to engage in illegal activities have recently increased there. A total of 55 such cases concerning 140 victims have been reported so far in the region since 2021, according to the ministry. Of them, four victims were reported in 2021 and 2022, respectively. The number of victims suffering from employment fraud surged to 94 people last year, it added. Thirty eight victims were reported in January this year alone. The government has decided to issue special travel advisories at two border checkpoints -- Chiang Saen and Mae Sai -- in Laos and Myanmar, respectively, as most Koreans employed in the region travel via Thailand, the ministry said. In October last year, 19 South Koreans were held captive by an illegal firm in the border town of Tachileik in Myanmar before being released in November. Source: Yonhap News Agency