Chilli reception: Thai senators to spice things up with complaint after Icelandic restaurant row

Photo via Porntip Rojanasunan.

Thai senators are preparing to lodge a complaint with the Icelandic government following an incident where Doctor Porntip Rojanasunan was thrown out of a Thai restaurant in Iceland by its Thai proprietor.

Last week, a video went viral on Thai social media depicting a Thai man, who identified himself as the owner of a restaurant in Iceland, expelling Porntip from his establishment. Porntip and her companions declined to vacate the premises, advising the owner to maintain a separation between his political views and personal life. In the video, the proprietor can be heard telling them to clear off.

“Go! Go! Get out of here! Get the hell out of here! You are corrupt. Get out! Get out of here! You do not belong here. We do not welcome you.”

Porntip’s friend, Bhumjaithai Party MP Mallika Jirapanvanit, did not believe the Thai man was the owner of the restaurant and asked him to prove his status. The man ignored Mallika’s curiosity and kept asking Porntip to leave.

The restaurant owner insisted that the other visitors in the group could stay, but Porntip had to leave.

“I only blame her (Porntip). You can all stay. I can accept that. I cannot accept what she has done to Thailand. I hate her. I really hate her. She is trash!”

Mallika then filmed the restaurant owner with her phone before asking Porntip to leave.

It is believed that the restaurant owner’s actions were motivated by the fact that he disagreed with the majority of senators’ opinions during the prime ministerial election. The owner may be angry with senators who voted against the election winner, Pita Limjaroenrat.

Thai netizens expressed mixed opinions, with some endorsing the owner’s actions while others found them inappropriate and impolite, considering it wrong to evict someone in such a manner.

The restaurant owner’s conduct has prompted Somchai Sawaengkarn, the chairman of the Senate’s Human Rights, Freedoms, and Consumer Protection Committee, to submit a complaint to the Icelandic government.

Somchai asserted that the actions depicted in the video amounted to a violation of human rights. Consequently, the committee plans to send the complaint document to Iceland, urging the government to acknowledge the inappropriate actions of its residents.

Additionally, the committee intends to pursue legal action against the restaurant owner under Thai law, regardless of whether Porntip chooses to pursue legal remedies. Somchai emphasized that this case could establish a precedent with potential repercussions for dissidents and senators.


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ORIGINAL STORY: Thai senator sparks outrage for disrespecting protected moss in Iceland and facing public rebuke

A video that went viral on social media depicted a Thai gentleman displaying rather impolite behaviour towards a woman bearing a striking resemblance to Senator Dr Porntip Rojanasunan, during her overseas travels.

This gentleman employed a series of unkind words in both the Thai and English languages, thereby eliciting a broad spectrum of criticism on various social media platforms.

Opinions on the incident diverged, with some netizens supporting the man’s actions, while others raised questions about Dr Porntip’s absence from the Senate meeting, as well as the participation of other Members of Parliament in the same trip.

Adding a layer of intrigue to this unfolding controversy, Dr Porntip was also spotted reclining upon the moss in an Icelandic lava field, an area meticulously safeguarded for its ecological sensitivity. This particular act drew sharp reproach from a multitude of netizens, given the fragile nature of moss and the considerable time it takes to regenerate.

In response to this wave of disapproval, Dr Porntip promptly removed the photograph from her social media presence.

Recently, Dr Porntip has returned to her homeland of Thailand from Iceland. The Thai Senator took to her Facebook page to address the various incidents, expressing her perspective that the restaurant altercation in Iceland served as a test of her moral fortitude.

“The moment he vented his disdain towards me, even pointing and uttering curses, I felt a sense of detachment and contemplated his past and future.”

She extended gratitude to all those who offered encouragement and advice but firmly stated her preference for resolving these issues through ethical principles rather than resorting to legal avenues.

Regarding the incident within the lava field, the Thai Senator humbly acknowledged her lapse in judgment for not thoroughly acquainting herself with the local regulations, reported Sanook.

“In the vicinity where I took those photographs, there were no explicit signs, hence my failure to adhere to the established rules. I wish to acknowledge my misstep, and as soon as I became aware of it, I promptly rectified the situation.

“I removed the content before my return, although it regrettably did not occur swiftly enough to prevent those with grievances against me from exacerbating the matter. Once again, I extend my thanks.”

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Petch Petpailin

Petpailin, or Petch, is a Thai translator and writer for The Thaiger who focuses on translating breakingThai news stories into English. With a background in field journalism, Petch brings several years of experience to the English News desk at The Thaiger. Before joining The Thaiger, Petch worked as a content writer for several known blogging sites in Bangkok, including Happio and The Smart Local. Her articles have been syndicated by many big publishers in Thailand and internationally, including the Daily Mail, The Sun and the Bangkok Post. She is a news writer who stops reading news on the weekends to spend more time cafe hopping and petting dwarf shrimp! But during office hours, you can find Petch on LinkedIn and you can reach her by email at

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