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A Chin Haw mosque at Doi Mae Salong, Chiang Rai

The Chin Haw or Chin Ho (Chinese: 秦霍; pinyin: Qín huò; Thai: จีนฮ่อ, RTGSChin Ho), also known locally as Yunnanese (Chinese: 雲南人, Thai: คนยูนนาน), are Chinese people who migrated to Thailand via Myanmar or Laos. Most of them were originally from Yunnan, a southern province of China.[1][2] They speak Southwestern Mandarin.


Generally, the Chin Haw can be divided into three groups, according to the time of their migration.[3]

  1. In the nineteenth century, the Qing army sent troops to suppress the rebellion in Yunnan, known as the Panthay Rebellion, which caused up to 1,000,000 lives lost - both civilians and soldiers. During this time, many people fled to the Shan state in Burma, then to northern Thailand.
  2. The Panthay Chinese merchants who traded between Yunnan, Burma, and Lan Na from their base in the Wa States. Some of them settled down along this trade route.
  3. After the Chinese Communist Revolution in 1949, remnants of the nationalist Kuomintang army fled to Burma and later established Kuomintang Chinese communities in Thailand


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The majority are Han Chinese and follow Chinese folk religion or Buddhism. Approximately one-third are Muslim, also known as Hui people or Hui Muslim.


The Chin Haw have traditionally been itinerant in their lifestyle, conducting long-distance caravan trade throughout the Thai-Burma-Laos frontier, southeast China, and northern Vietnam.[4]

They have engaged in the heroin trade. Ma Hseuh-fu, from Yunnan province, was one of the most prominent Chin Haw heroin drug lords. His other professions included trading in tea and being a hotelier.[5]

The Muslim Chin Haw are the same ethnic group as the Panthay in Burma, who are also descendants of Hui Muslims from Yunnan province, China.[citation needed]

See also


  1. ^ คอมพิวเตอร์ แม่ฮ่องสอน. khondoi.com (in Thai). Archived from the original on 20 February 2012. Retrieved 22 February 2009.
  2. ^ Forbes, Andrew; Henley, David (2011). Traders of the Golden Triangle. Chiang Mai: Cognoscenti Books. ASIN B006GMID5K.
  3. ^ "Oknation" ประวัติการอพยพของจีนมุสลิม. oknation.net (in Thai). 10 April 2008. Archived from the original on 25 August 2013. Retrieved 22 April 2014.
  4. ^ Forbes, Andrew D. W. (1987). "The "Čīn-Hǭ" (Yunnanese Chinese) Caravan Trade with North Thailand During the Late Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries". Journal of Asian History. 21 (1): 1–47. JSTOR 41930655.
  5. ^ Barlow, Joel John (25 February 2011). "Drugs and Cultural Survival in the Golden Triangle". Shan Herald. Archived from the original on 1 May 2011. Retrieved 7 January 2011.