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Grand opening of Nakhon Ratchasima war room




Grand opening of Nakhon Ratchasima war room | The Thaiger
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In a joint effort with locals, government, the private sector and Former Deputy prime minister Suwat Liptapanlop, Nakhon Ratchasima has officially announced the opening of a “War Room”. The purpose of the situation room is to combat the deadly disease and to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 virus locally in the province.

The centre is also producing free cloth face masks to distribute across the northeastern province.

The centre handed personal protective clothing, spraying agent and disinfectant to the head of the mobile disinfection volunteers, while medical face masks and alcohol hand sanitiser were given to community leaders.

The centre is operating without government budget and aims to produce 1,000 sets of masks and alcohol sanitisers per day for distribution to the public.

Suwat, a former deputy PM in Thaksin Shinawatra’s government, is now the head of the Chart Pattana party, which helped launch the centre.

SOURCE: The Nation


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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Deputy PM says politics not involved in Emergency Decree extension

Jack Burton



Deputy PM says politics not involved in Emergency Decree extension | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Nation Thailand

“There is a week to go before entering the third phase of relaxation. Whether a further easing will occur depends on this week. I want to urge everyone to keep their guard up at all times.”

With the second month of Thailand’s national state of emergency coming to a close, a deputy PM says fear of second wave of Covid-19 infections, and not politics, is behind the government’s need to extend the Emergency Decree. Business closures and travel restrictions under the decree have produced huge economic hardship nationwide.

Prawit Wongsuwon’s comments come as the cabinet is expected today to extend the emergency decree for a third month. But opposition and critics disagree with prolonging the decree, saying the Communicable Disease Act alone should be enough to control the spread of the virus.

They claim that PM Prayut Chan-o-cha’s administration has a hidden agenda, alleging they want to hold onto emergency decree powers for political reasons.

The spokesman for the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration, Dr Taweesilp Visanuyothin, defends using the decree. He says it is a far better tool than other laws because it unites virus control efforts under one command.

Taweesilp yesterday urged the public to remain vigilant, to wear masks, frequently wash their hands and practice social distancing. This, he says, will help Thailand in the next phase of lockdown easing. But public health officials say there are signs that people are becoming less vigilant as the number of new daily infections drops.

The deputy chief of the Department of Disease Control says some organisations have begun relaxing preventative measures, like cancelling work from home. As a result, Bangkok’s BTS stations are again overcrowded during peak hours. But he concedes the Covid-19 situation in Thailand has improved, with the number of new daily infections dropping to rates not seen since the early phase of the pandemic in February.

He says health authorities want to continue the momentum, adding that lockdown measures will no longer be necessary if the number of new daily infections is kept below 5 per 1 million people.

“For example, Bangkok has a population of 8 million. If the number of Covid-19 patients is 40, transmission is considered limited”

Authorities say the situation could become critical if the number of new patients passes 10 per 1 million people nationwide, which would prompt stricter lockdown measures again.

SOURCES: Chiang Rai Times | Bangkok Post

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Government warns Thai residents over fake contact-tracing sites

May Taylor



Government warns Thai residents over fake contact-tracing sites | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Claudio Schwarz | @purzlbaum on Unsplash

The Thai government has issued a warning after a number of complaints from people being sent incorrect links and annoying pop-ups when attempting to “check in” at various businesses. The country’s Covid-19 task force says the government’s official “Thai Chana” contact-tracing website does not do this and warned citizens to make sure they only follow legitimate links.

Dr. Taweesin Visanuyothin, spokesman for the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration, says anyone with concerns should report business venues that are using incorrect QR codes to capture customers’ data, possibly with the aim of using that data to promote products or services.

The Pattaya News also reports that all provincial governors must ensure the check-in process is being followed by all businesses, not just those that re-opened in the last round of easing of restrictions. All venues are obliged to provide both an electronic and paper-based means of checking in, even those that did not do so prior to the introduction of the technology. Anyone without a smartphone or who simply prefers to sign in using paper and pen may still do so.

SOURCE: The Pattaya News

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Thai police deny using emergency decree as political tool

May Taylor



Thai police deny using emergency decree as political tool | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Khaosod English

Following the arrest of two activists in Bangkok on Friday, police deny using the emergency decree to suppress political dissent. Both activists were arrested at the Bangkok Arts and Culture Centre, where a small group was commemorating the 6th anniversary of the May 2014 military coup that swept PM Prayut Chan-o-cha to power, tossing out the elected government of Yingluck Shinawatra.

Authorities say both men, who were leading the group, were violating the emergency decree by holding an unauthorised gathering. Police spokesman Kissana Phathanacharoen say the case will likely go to trial within the next month, where the activists could receive a sentence of up to 2 years’ imprisonment if found guilty.

The emergency decree, enacted by the government to handle the time of the Covid-19 outbreak in Thailand, has been extended to the end of June.

However, according to a Khaosod English report, one of the men, Anurak Jeantawanich, says neither he nor fellow defendant Totsaporn Serirak, were doing anything to spread the virus, having taken all necessary safety precautions. He says the arrests are politically motivated and plans to appeal to the Office of the Attorney General. The arrests come just hours after several other political activists were arrested for staging a protest at Democracy Monument in the capital.

“The government is using the emergency decree to deprive freedom and liberty of the people, no different from under the junta.”

Kissana denies the allegation, saying the police are simply enforcing the current law that prohibits any gatherings.

“My job is not to make people believe or not believe. We enforced the law as usual. The organisers violated the decree and it’s the same with those found drinking alcohol in a group.”

SOURCE: Khaosod English

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