The Hmong, the Karen, the Lisu, the Mien, the Akha, the Lahu, the Lua, the Thin and the Khamu are the recognized as indigenous peoples of Thailand. Most of them live as fishermen or as hunter-gatherers. The indigenous peoples of Thailand live mainly in three geographical regions of the country. The people of Chao Ley, who are indigenous fishing communities, and the mani, who are small hunter-gatherer populations, live in the south. Some small groups live on the Korat Plateau, northeast and east, while the highland villages, Chao-Khao, live in the north and northwest of the country.
Nine so-called mountain tribes are officially recognized. These are the Hmong, Karen, Lisu, Mien, Akha, Lahu, Lua, Thin and Khamu. According to the Department of Welfare and Social Development, there are 3,429 villages of mountain tribes with a total population of 923,257 people. The indigenous peoples of the south and northeast are not included.
Thailand government adopted the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), but it does not officially recognize the existence of indigenous peoples in the country. There were some developments for the indigenous peoples of the country, but they continue to be stigmatized and challenged especially by land grabbing by the government. A major struggle for the indigenous peoples of Thailand is land grabbing by the government, such as Rawai, located in the province of Phuket. Rawai is a popular tourist spot in southern Thailand and also home to Chao Ley, a collective term for three indigenous groups: the Mogan, Moglen and Urak Lawoi.
In order to produce media contents by oneself such as posters, news and other news outlets and inform indigenous communities in their language, also to monitor the news covered negatively carried out by the mainstream media, Phnom Thano along with his Thai indigenous Journalists founded Indigenous Media Network. In this program, Phenom Thano talks about the situation of indigenous peoples in Thailand and their works building network of Indigenous media in Thailand.