Rajesh Koirala
Editor , Aksharica (Nepali Newsletter)
Bhutan
Bhutan is a small, remote and very
poor country between two powerful
neighbours – China and India.
Bhutan is a co...
BHUTAN & NEPAL
Nepali in Bhutan
 The first reports of people of Nepalese origin in Bhutan
was around 1620, when Shabdrung Ngawang Namgya...
The Bhutanese refugees are people claiming to
be Lhotshampas (southerners), a group of
people of Nepalese origin, includin...
EXPULSIONS : How & why ?
 In 1990 the Bhutanese government (monarchy)
implemented harsh rules to enforce a depopulation a...
Reality : Having all proofs
Basic Facts (2007)
• Refugee Population : 108,000 (Approx.)
• 95% : Lhotshampa or Southern
Bhutanese.
• Location : Seven C...
7 Camps in eastern Nepal
Religion and Ethnicity (2007)
 Hindu – largest group (60-70%)
 Buddhists – (20-25%)
 Kirat (indigenous) - (5-8%)
 Chri...
So called ‘Education’ in camps
Fire in camps : A big problem
History : flight & need for resettlement
 1980’s : Bhutan adopts Bhutanization policies –limiting language, customs,
reli...
No where..
Bhutan will not let the people
return because they are not of pure
Bhutanese ethnic origin.
Nepal will not le...
As Nepal and Bhutan have yet to implement
any agreement on repatriation, many
Bhutanese refugees have since resettled to
N...
Resettlement in 8 countries
Australia, Canada, Denmark, Netherlands, New
Zealand, Norway, United Kingdom &
United States o...
More in the US (nearly 87%)
Remaining in …
1. Australia (2nd)
2. Canada (3rd)
3. New Zealand (4th)
and some in …..
4. Netherlands
5. Denmark
6. Norway...
In 2008 :
5 thousand 3
hundred 20
(5,320)
In 2009 :
13 thousand 4
hundred 32
(13,432)
In 2010 :
12 thousand 3
hundred 63
(12, 363)
US ambassador to Nepal, Scott H
DeLisi, has revealed that there is no
fixed quota for the American
government for the rese...
In 2011 :
14 thousand 9
hundred 99
(14, 999)
In 2012 :
15 thousand 70
(15, 070)
In 2013 :
9 thousand 1
hundred 34
(9, 134)
In 2014 :
8 thousand 4
hundred 34
(8, 434)
In 2015 :
5 thousand 7
hundred 75
(5, 775)
In 2016 :
5 thousand 8
hundred 17
(5, 817)
2008 : 5 thousand 320
2009 : 13 thousand 432
2010 : 12 thousand 363
2011 : 14 thousand 999
2012 : 15 thousand 70
2013 : 9 ...
In more than 40 states
More in ..
1. Pennsylvania
2. Texas
3. New York
4. Georgia
5. Ohio
Not in …
1. Alabama
2. Delaware
3. Hawaii
4. Maine
5. Mississippi
6. Montana
7. Oklahoma
8. West Virginia
9. Wyoming
Sources :
 UNHCR.
 IOM
 Refugee Processing Center (RPC) / U.S Department
of State (DOS)
 Wikipedia
 Some other websit...
Bhutanese refugees in the US: 2008 - 2016
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Bhutanese refugees in the US: 2008 - 2016

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- Who are Bhutanese refugees ?
- Where are they resettling ?
- How many resettled in the US ? and more.

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Bhutanese refugees in the US: 2008 - 2016

  1. 1. Rajesh Koirala Editor , Aksharica (Nepali Newsletter)
  2. 2. Bhutan Bhutan is a small, remote and very poor country between two powerful neighbours – China and India. Bhutan is a conservative Buddhist kingdom high in the Himalayas.
  3. 3. BHUTAN & NEPAL
  4. 4. Nepali in Bhutan  The first reports of people of Nepalese origin in Bhutan was around 1620, when Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal commissioned a few Newar craftsmen from the Kathmandu (Nepal) to make a silver stupa to contain the ashes of his father Tempa Nima.  During the late 19th Century, contractors working for the Bhutanese government began to organize the settlement of Nepali-speaking people in uninhabited areas of southern Bhutan in order to open those areas up for cultivation.  The south soon became the country's main supplier of food. By 1930, according to British colonial officials, much of the south was under cultivation by a population of Nepali origin that amounted to some 60,000 people.
  5. 5. The Bhutanese refugees are people claiming to be Lhotshampas (southerners), a group of people of Nepalese origin, including some Kirat, Tamang, and Gurung peoples. These refugees registered in refugee camps in eastern Nepal during the 1990s affirming to be Bhutanese citizens deported from Bhutan. Around 103,000 Nepali-speaking Bhutanese were forced to flee their homes (many in appalling situations), and ended up in 7 refugee camps in Nepal.
  6. 6. EXPULSIONS : How & why ?  In 1990 the Bhutanese government (monarchy) implemented harsh rules to enforce a depopulation and ethnic cleansing policy.  Their aim - one people – one language – one religion – one culture. The Bhutanese had to provide proof of 20 years continuous residence in Bhutan and knowledge of the language and culture of Northern Bhutanese communities.  As the Southern Bhutanese were mostly of Nepalese origin and Hindu, they did not fit the criteria.  This lead to one of the largest ethnic (People of Nepali origin) expulsions in the world. Most Lhotshampa or Southern Bhutanese came to Nepal.
  7. 7. Reality : Having all proofs
  8. 8. Basic Facts (2007) • Refugee Population : 108,000 (Approx.) • 95% : Lhotshampa or Southern Bhutanese. • Location : Seven Camps in Eastern Nepal. • Arrival in Nepal : Early 1990’s (most by 1995). • Status in Nepal : Prima facie refugees under UNHCR mandate.
  9. 9. 7 Camps in eastern Nepal
  10. 10. Religion and Ethnicity (2007)  Hindu – largest group (60-70%)  Buddhists – (20-25%)  Kirat (indigenous) - (5-8%)  Christians – (2-3%)  Over 50 ethnic and caste groups in the camps (e.g. Brahman, Dalits.)  Populations settled in camps along ethnic/caste lines which play an important role in social and camp dynamics.
  11. 11. So called ‘Education’ in camps
  12. 12. Fire in camps : A big problem
  13. 13. History : flight & need for resettlement  1980’s : Bhutan adopts Bhutanization policies –limiting language, customs, religion, and political parties.  1988 : Census conducted to identify “genuine Bhutanese.” Many of Nepalese descent excluded.  1988- 1990 : Demonstrations and protests in Southern Bhutan against new policies. Leaders jailed. First refugees flee to India.  Oct 1990 : Bhutanese army fires upon demonstrations killing & wounding many.  1990-92 : Government closes schools, removes officials, and begins confiscating land. Government forces many to sign “Voluntary Migration Forms” before expulsion.  1993-95 : Refugee population at grows from first group of 40,000 to 80,000 as others flee and join relatives in Nepal.  June 2003 : Nepal/Bhutan discussions on repatriation stall after pilot Bhutanese verification process finds only 2% of refugees are Bhutanese.
  14. 14. No where.. Bhutan will not let the people return because they are not of pure Bhutanese ethnic origin. Nepal will not let them out of the refugee camps and into the country because they are Bhutanese.
  15. 15. As Nepal and Bhutan have yet to implement any agreement on repatriation, many Bhutanese refugees have since resettled to North America, Europe and Australia under the auspices of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.
  16. 16. Resettlement in 8 countries Australia, Canada, Denmark, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, United Kingdom & United States of America
  17. 17. More in the US (nearly 87%)
  18. 18. Remaining in … 1. Australia (2nd) 2. Canada (3rd) 3. New Zealand (4th) and some in ….. 4. Netherlands 5. Denmark 6. Norway 7. United Kingdom
  19. 19. In 2008 : 5 thousand 3 hundred 20 (5,320)
  20. 20. In 2009 : 13 thousand 4 hundred 32 (13,432)
  21. 21. In 2010 : 12 thousand 3 hundred 63 (12, 363)
  22. 22. US ambassador to Nepal, Scott H DeLisi, has revealed that there is no fixed quota for the American government for the resettlement of Bhutanese refugees from Nepal. “Initially, we proposed for 60,000 refugees for resettlement in our country,” DeLisi informed while addressing a programme at the transit camp run by the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) Monday. “However, there is no cap for the number of refugees to be resettled.” (2010 Dec 13) Scott H DeLisi
  23. 23. In 2011 : 14 thousand 9 hundred 99 (14, 999)
  24. 24. In 2012 : 15 thousand 70 (15, 070)
  25. 25. In 2013 : 9 thousand 1 hundred 34 (9, 134)
  26. 26. In 2014 : 8 thousand 4 hundred 34 (8, 434)
  27. 27. In 2015 : 5 thousand 7 hundred 75 (5, 775)
  28. 28. In 2016 : 5 thousand 8 hundred 17 (5, 817)
  29. 29. 2008 : 5 thousand 320 2009 : 13 thousand 432 2010 : 12 thousand 363 2011 : 14 thousand 999 2012 : 15 thousand 70 2013 : 9 thousand 134 2014 : 8 thousand 434 2015 : 5 thousand 775 2016 : 5 thousand 817 Total : 90 thousand 364* • The U.S. government's fiscal year begins on 1 October of the previous calendar year and ends on 30 September of the year with which it is numbered.
  30. 30. In more than 40 states
  31. 31. More in .. 1. Pennsylvania 2. Texas 3. New York 4. Georgia 5. Ohio
  32. 32. Not in … 1. Alabama 2. Delaware 3. Hawaii 4. Maine 5. Mississippi 6. Montana 7. Oklahoma 8. West Virginia 9. Wyoming
  33. 33. Sources :  UNHCR.  IOM  Refugee Processing Center (RPC) / U.S Department of State (DOS)  Wikipedia  Some other websites. (Thanks to all sources)

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