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Thailand responds to incoming Russians with extradition treaty

Thailand is responding to the flock of incoming Russians fleeing their home country with a new extradition treaty. The Cabinet approved a draft extradition treaty with Russia that is similar to agreements with other nations.

According to The Star, the treaty would boost collaboration to help curb crime and does not need Parliament’s approval.

The mass exodus of Russians from their home country has been seen in Thailand, with many choosing the kingdom as their new home to avoid the fallout of the war in Ukraine.

This year has seen over 370,000 Russian visitors to Thailand. That’s 67% of last year’s entire total of 435,000. Pol. Maj. Gen. Phanthana Nutchanart, the deputy commander of the Immigration Bureau assures though that the influx has not increased Russian criminal activity.

The official stated that there has been no indication of any Russians sneaking into the country through illegal channels. They also say hardened criminals are not making it into Thailand, just well-off vacationers.

Many are looking to move to the kingdom permanently, citing data showing Russians bought nearly 40% of condos sold to foreigners in Phuket last year.

Most are purchasing off-plan condos for US$500,000 or more, to relocate when they may feel forced to leave their homeland, reported Aljazeera.

The surge in property sales is likely due to President Vladimir Putin’s order for Moscow’s first wartime mobilization since World War II, suggesting that many arrivals are planning to stay for an extended period.

Sofia Malygaevareal, a real estate agent in Phuket who originally hails from Russia, revealed that most of her clients are wealthy people aged between 30-35.

“A lot of people have decided to move to Phuket from three to six months to one year.”

Obtaining long-term residency rights in Thailand can be difficult, which can be a challenge for Russian arrivals who require homes, schools, jobs, and visas to stay on the idyllic island.

However, for those determined to swap a home on a war footing for a life in the Thai sunshine, money is not an issue. As a result of the growing realization that the war has no end in sight as it enters its second year, an influx of Russians has driven prices up to record levels in Russian-dominated areas of the island, according to local realtors.

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Ann Carter

Ann Carter is an award-winning journalist from the United States with over 12 years experience in print and broadcast news. Her work has been featured in America, China and Thailand as she has worked internationally at major news stations as a writer and producer. Carter graduated from the Walter Williams Missouri School of Journalism in the USA.