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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

State quarantine for Thais entering Singapore, while harder hit nations get a pass



PHOTO: Bloomberg

Singapore’s government will continue to require that all Thai arrivals to the city-state undergo a 14 day mandatory state quarantine before being allowed to enter the country and mingle with the general population.

Singapore, which has 45,298 total cases, says that Thais must serve their “Stay Home Notice” at dedicated government quarantine facilities. Arrivals from China, which has seen a total of 83,581 cases, Germany, with 198,765 cases, and Japan with 20,174, among other countries, will only need to be tested upon arrival and do not have to carry out their quarantine in government facilities. There has been no official explanation for the unfounded snub of people from Thailand.

Thailand was not included on a list of exempted countries, despite having only 3,197 cases out of a population greater than that of the UK.

Only days ago, the UK, with the eighth highest number of infections in the world, gave a similar snub to Thailand, actually including, then later removing, it from its “green light list,” despite the kingdom’s remarkable success in containing the virus, recovery rate of over 95% and no local infections for 44 consecutive days.


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  1. David

    Thursday, July 9, 2020 at 9:15 pm

    An issue that boils down to two well-known words in most of the world, but sadly seldom applicable to what goes on in this country . . . TRUST & CREDIBILITY.

  2. Paul Boonmee

    Thursday, July 9, 2020 at 9:16 pm

    Makes absolute sense because of how Thailand is treating visitors to the country. How about all the people left stranded in other countries because they cannot return due to various reasons?

  3. Rainer S

    Thursday, July 9, 2020 at 9:21 pm

    This article is factually wrong. I just arrived in Singapore from Germany and I am sitting out my 14 days quarantine like everyone else. Singapore does not discriminate. The only difference is that I can do this at my private home, not a government facility, but I am monitored up to 5 times a day. Please correct this article which is misleading.

  4. Brendan Cullen

    Thursday, July 9, 2020 at 9:48 pm

    Tit for TAT you might say.

  5. Driessens Ronald

    Thursday, July 9, 2020 at 10:20 pm

    Countries think like, you don’t allow our citizens, so we don’t allow yours

  6. Robert

    Thursday, July 9, 2020 at 10:46 pm

    I don’t understand why it would be a tit for tat. I thinks its more about safety, Thailand is clearly only doing very selective testing

  7. John Burnham

    Friday, July 10, 2020 at 4:48 am

    Not too sure if this article is fair, the fact remains that Thailand is allowing specific people into the country if you jump through big hurdles before even allowing you onto plane says – we do not want you here! or and if you are allowed in, you need to quarantine for 14 days is another way of saying – don’t even bother! So tit for tat is what you get, this is purely the Government’s own doing. Good luck with the economic recovery, it will take many years!

  8. Simon

    Friday, July 10, 2020 at 8:16 am

    Likely stems from mistrust of the Thai Government – which totally and utterly corrupt.

  9. martin walker

    Monday, July 13, 2020 at 10:52 pm

    uk would allow thailand to be on the green list but it has to work both ways hence thailand coming off the uk list !!

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Jack Burton is an American writer, broadcaster, linguist and journalist who has lived in Asia since 1987. A native of the state of Georgia, he attended the The University of Georgia's Henry Grady School of Journalism, which hands out journalism's prestigious Peabody Awards. His works have appeared in The China Post, The South China Morning Post, The International Herald Tribune and many magazines throughout Asia and the world. He is fluent in Mandarin and has appeared on television and radio for decades in Taiwan, Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.

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