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High winds, strong waves harm southern fishing businesses

Maya Taylor

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High winds, strong waves harm southern fishing businesses | The Thaiger
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PHOTO: Sumeth Panpetch

Fishermen in the Ranot district of Songkhla province in southern Thailand, are struggling to make a living as strong winds and waves of three to five metres in height continue to batter the southern Gulf coast.

The Nation reports that dangerous conditions in the Gulf of Thailand have been preventing local fishermen from going to sea for several months now, meaning they’re unable to support their families.

While there is no rain in the area, waves remain high, causing widespread disruption to the local fishing business. The northeast monsoon in the Gulf means high winds and waves of up to 2 metres northwards from Chumphon province, with 2 – 3 metre high waves in the lower Gulf south of Surat Thani, along with a risk of waves higher than 3 metres during thunder storms.

The Thai Meteorological Department is warning residents on the South’s eastern coast to beware of inshore surges, issuing an advisory that all ships should proceed with caution, while small vessels in and around the Gulf should remain ashore.

Meanwhile, a strong high-pressure area means strong winds and cooler weather for northern parts of Thailand, with minimum temperatures ranging from 5 – 15 degrees Celsius, and frost at altitude.

In eastern and central Thailand, including Bangkok, minimum temperatures are from 12 – 22 degrees Celsius, with the TMD warning residents to beware of the risk of fires due to the dry and changeable weather.

SOURCE: The Nation

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Drugs

Clash with kratom smugglers by Songhkla border leaves 1 Malaysian cop killed and 1 injured

The Thaiger

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Clash with kratom smugglers by Songhkla border leaves 1 Malaysian cop killed and 1 injured | The Thaiger

A clash with kratom drug smugglers by Thailand ‘s Songhkla border has left 1 Malaysian cop killed and 1 injured. The clash happened at around 2am this mornign as a Malaysian policeman came up on 13 men acting suspiciously near the border on the Malaysian side, which is opposite of Sadao district.

Gunshots were exchanged and 2 Thai smugglers were arrested with 3 other Thais wounded. The wounded Thais attempted to cross the border but were caught and sent to Hat Yai hospital for treatment. 54 year old Baharudin bi Pramli, was shot and killed whils 39 year old Norihan A/L Tari was wounded.

The kratom smugglers were believed to be both Malaysian and Thai nationals. Kratom, is a mild narcotic, which has been categorised as an illegal drug in Thailand. 1 of the injured men was taken to the area, as police say he was well enough to identify the scene of the clash and the gang’s escape route. Across the border, Malaysian police reportedly arrested 2 Thai smugglers. One was 38 year old Sahamadyusob Talah from tambon Ban Khuan of Muang district, while the other was unnamed.

Recently, a Burmese man was busted with 20 kilograms of kratom after he illegally crossed a natural border into Thailand in the southern Muang district in Prachuap Khiri Khan. Border patrol police and administrative officials were patrolling Ban Hup Phueng, a village near the natural pass on the Myanmar border, after Thailand authorities sealed the border earlier due to an outbreak of Covid in Myanmar. Such arrests of illegal border crossing have been more prevalent in recent months as the province has stepped up surveillance of the border due to the Covid-10 pandemic.

Just last weekend, a Burmese refugee contracted Covid after sneaking across the border to visit his native country and upon coming back, he tested positive for the virus, causing officials to lockdown the refugee camp in Tak province.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Thailand

Police seize 45 million baht worth of heroin and methamphetamine from Hat Yai home

Caitlin Ashworth

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Police seize 45 million baht worth of heroin and methamphetamine from Hat Yai home | The Thaiger
PHOTO: One 31

Police arrested a man on drug charges and seized 45 million baht worth of drugs in the southern province Songkhla near the Thai-Malaysia border. Police raided a home Hat Yai district and found 76 bars of heroin weighing a total of 27 kilograms and 980,000 methamphetamine pills. 28 year old Sompong Mugem, who rents the home, was arrested.

Police had received a tip about a large quantity of drugs being carried in an Isuzu pickup truck and delivered to a home rented by Sompong. Police tracked down the home and saw the pickup truck parked outside. Police on the narcotics suppression division estimate the heroin and methamphetamine are worth at least 45 million baht.

The drugs are believed to have been trafficked from the northern border province to be distributed in the South.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Thailand

Zoos to be investigated for possible involvement in black market animal trade

Caitlin Ashworth

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Zoos to be investigated for possible involvement in black market animal trade | The Thaiger
PHOTO: js100

Zoos across Thailand will be investigated for possible involvement in the black market wildlife trade. The probe follows a case where 2 rare albino barking deer went missing at Songkhla Zoo and a top zoo official investigating the disappearance was shot and killed at the zoo in an apparent murder-suicide.

After suspicion that the deer were stolen and sold in the illegal wildlife trade, the Zoological Park Organisation of Thailand board set up a panel to investigate zoos nationwide for possible involvement in the trade. The zoos that fall under the organisation’s responsibility are in Chiang Mai, Nakhon Ratchasima, Khon Kaen, Songkhla, Ubon Ratchathani and Chon Buri.

The panel will determine whether or not illegal wildlife trading and trafficking is happening at the zoos, according to the board chairperson and former permanent secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives Chavalit Chookajorn.

Chavalit says the board also wants answers to the disappearances of the 2 albino barking deer at Songkhla Zoo. They went missing in February and September. The latest missing deer is believed to be eaten by a python. The board’s acting director Smitti Darakorn Na Ayudthaya says the deer’s carcass was found in a snake’s stomach.

The organisation’s director, Suriya Saengpong, initially went out to Songkhla Zoo to investigate the 2 disappearances. He was allegedly shot and killed by senior veterinarian Phuwadol Suwanna who later allegedly killed himself. After the fatal shooting, some have cited concerns that the deer may have been stolen and sold in the illegal wildlife trade. The case prompted the prime minister to order the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment to investigate.

The Zoological Park Organisation panel plans to look at the current state and numbers of animals at the zoos under their jurisdiction and determine if there are signs of illegal wildlife trading. The system for reporting animal populations at the zoos needs to be updated, Chavalit says, adding that the process is complicated and time consuming. He also says the organisation plans to list zoo’s information on their website with animals’ birth and death dates.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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