Connect with us

Thailand

Phuket Gazette Thailand News: Army-police rift widens; Yingluck ponders martial law; Rice farmers join PDRC; Rhino horn for Hanoi bagged

Legacy Phuket Gazette

Published 

 on 

PHUKET MEDIA WATCH
– Thailand news compiled by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

Army-police rift widens
The Nation / Phuket Gazette
PHUKET: Rifts between the police and the military appeared to be widening yesterday, as the Army commander in chief asked the national police chief to speed up investigation into recent attacks and a senior naval commander threatened to sue the police over allegations that a naval officer was behind the Sunday grenade attack.

Police also failed in their earlier push for an emergency decree to be issued to deal with the growing protest movement, with military commanders saying they saw no need for the decree.

Caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, meanwhile, said yesterday that her government was considering whether to impose the decree, while caretaker Foreign Minister Surapong Towichukchai-kul, who is in charge of the Centre for the Administration of Peace and Order (CAPO), said the law would be invoked if violence continued.

Army commander in chief General Prayuth Chan-ocha, however, said yesterday that he had telephoned national police chief Pol General Adul Sangsingkaew and asked him to ensure that the “society gets clear facts” about the incidents. He has also said the assailants must face legal action and punishment.

Prayuth, in response to criticism that the military has been passive about dealing with the political conflict, said it had already done a lot. He also said the armed forces were not involved in any conflicts with any groups of people.

Meanwhile, Naval Special Warfare commander Rear Admiral Winai Klom-in yesterday threatened to file a lawsuit against the Royal Thai Police if it can be established that the police caused misunderstanding via social media that one of his subordinates had flung a grenade at Victory Monument.

Winai said he believed the police were aware that the distribution of false information – by comparing a Naval Special Warfare Command officer’s picture with that of the suspect online – had affected his command.

“The way the police did it could be seen as an attempt to discredit our agency,” Winai said, adding that the officer whose face was linked with that of the bomb suspect was on a mission to fight against drug trafficking.

The police yesterday issued a statement confirming that the Navy officer in question was not the one who lobbed a grenade at the Victory Monument protest site. Pol General Ek Angsananont, deputy national police chief, also denied that police had distributed the naval officer’s photograph along with the arrest warrant for the bomb suspect.

Checkpoints, jointly manned by police and soldiers, have been set up as part of increased security after a series of attacks targeting protesters and their leaders.

National police chief Adul Sangsingkaew has ordered the setting up of checkpoints and day patrols, CAPO deputy spokesman Pol Maj-General Anucha Romayanant said.

Anucha said the checkpoints would focus on foiling attempts to smuggle weapons into protest areas, adding that the authorities were also working with protest leaders to boost security measures.

Adul also dismissed reports of a conflict between police and the military officers involved in the anti-government rally, which has continued for over two months.

Since December 26, four people have been killed and more than 260 injured in several attacks by unknown assailants, with grenade attacks on Friday and Sunday.

Metropolitan Police officer Pol Colonel Choosak Techarakpong inspected the Victory Monument protest site – which has been targeted several times – with People’s Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) guards to help set up checkpoints. Choosak said uniformed police officers would be sent to maintain security at the protest site and that four checkpoints would be set up around the venue.

He added that up to 40 police would man each checkpoint and as many as 20 would patrol the rally site during the day.

Medical chief warns of more clashes
The Nation / Phuket Gazette
PHUKET: Four people have died and 267 injured from politics-related violence in less than a month and the risk of more bloody incidents is rising, the Public Health Ministry said yesterday.

“Earlier, unidentified groups used to attack at around 3am, but not anymore, which suggests that such attacks might happen at any time and anywhere in the protest sites,” Dr Narong Apikulvanich said yesterday, in his capacity as head of the medical centre for cases related to political rallies.

He was referring to incidents that have taken place between December 26 and January 19.

Narong said these incidents could be categorised as follows: fights over a certain area between protesters and officials; clashes between people with different ideology; and attacks by unidentified groups.

“Now, the risk is present at all protest sites,” Narong said.

The People’s Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) has been staging massive rallies against the Yingluck Shinawatra government.

‘Keep victims safe’

Narong said he hoped PDRC guards would prepare safe zones for the transfer of victims in case more violence erupts. As of press time, 29 of the 267 injured were still in hospital.

Medical Services Department (MDS) deputy director general Dr Prapon Tangsrikertikul confirmed that bomb attacks at the Victory Monument rally site on Sunday had injured 28 people, six of whom are still being treated at Rajavithi Hospital, three at Ramathibodi Hospital, and two at Phra Mongkutklao Hospital.

Dr Udom Chaovarindr, director of Rajavithi Hospital, said four of the six victims at his hospital had sustained serious injuries. “These four victims have undergone surgery, with one patient requiring brain surgery,” he said.

Meanwhile, Narong said his centre had prepared nine paramedic teams and 30 rescue-worker teams for protest zones.

“While some teams are based at major protest sites, others have been given the task of accompanying protest marches,” he said.

He added that hospitals in Bangkok’s adjacent provinces had also been instructed to make preparations for emergency.

“In some cases, it may not be possible for the victims to be sent to hospitals in Bangkok,” he explained.

Public Health permanent secretary Narong Sahametapat said he had ordered heath offices in 18 provinces, where rallies are continuing, to get medical teams ready for possible medical emergencies.

“There are political rallies and farmers’ rallies going on. So, medical teams need to monitor the situation closely,” Narong said.

Many state offices shut down by protests in the South
The Nation / Phuket Gazette
PHUKET: Protesters continue to lay siege to provincial halls, plus district offices and health offices in provinces throughout the South. They have called for state officials to stop work after the People’s Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) chief Suthep Thaugsuban ordered that the anti-government campaign be stepped up.

In Nakhon Si Thammarat: No officials were at work at the provincial hall after the PDRC rallied and called for state workers to cease working.

Officials at every state agency threw their support behind the campaign by closing operations. Of 23 district offices,

— Phuket Gazette Editors

 

Want more from the Thaiger family?

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS for instant updates on your mobile
📧 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🔔 Subscribe to or Join our YouTube channel for daily video updates

Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Thai government expects to open vaccine registration to foreigners by August

Maya Taylor

Published

on

PHOTO: Mehmet Turgut Kirkgoz on Unsplash

A Health Ministry spokesperson has confirmed that foreigners living in Thailand should be able to register for Covid-19 vaccination by August. Ratchada Thanadirek says the government is working on a dedicated registration platform for foreign nationals living in the Kingdom, which it’s hoped will be ready in 3 months’ time.

Meanwhile, Thai Visa News reports that vaccine registration for Thais has been extended to those aged between 18 and 59 years old, who can now sign up from May 31. Registration had initially been limited to Thai nationals over the age of 60, as well as those with underlying health conditions. However, the third wave of the virus means registration for younger Thais has been brought forward from July.

Thai nationals can register for vaccination through the Mor Prom platform or the Mor Prom Line account. They can also register at government hospitals. According to Ratchada, the vaccines that will be used in the government rollout will primarily be AstraZeneca, manufactured in-country by Siam Bioscience.

However, she points out that there are 3 other vaccines that have been approved by the Thai Food and Drug Administration. They are the Chinese-made Sinovac, the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine, and the vaccine from US manufacturer, Moderna. The latter is expected to be available for purchase at private hospitals, although there has been no confirmation of when supplies might arrive.

SOURCE: Thai Visa News

 

Want more from the Thaiger family?

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS for instant updates on your mobile
📧 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🔔 Subscribe to or Join our YouTube channel for daily video updates

Continue Reading

Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Some Covid-19 restrictions relaxed across Thailand, fewer “dark red” provinces

Maya Taylor

Published

on

PHOTO: Facebook/PR Thai Government

The Thai government has relaxed some Covid-19 restrictions across the country, while downgrading the risk level of a number of provinces. The number of provinces designated as “strictly controlled” areas, or “dark red” zones, has been reduced from 6 to 4. They are Bangkok and the central provinces of Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani, and Samut Prakan.

So, what, if anything, has changed where you are? Below is a summary of the situation across the country, courtesy of TAT News.

The “red zone” or “maximum control” areas now consist of the following 17 provinces:

Central Thailand: Ayutthaya, Kanchanaburi, Nakhon Pathom, Phetchaburi, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Ratchaburi, and Samut Sakhon

Eastern Thailand: Chachoengsao, Chon Buri, and Rayong

Northern Thailand: Tak

Southern Thailand: Nakhon Si Thammarat, Narathiwat, Ranong, Songkhla, Surat Thani, and Yala.

There are now 56 provinces designated as “orange” or “controlled areas”, up from 26. They are as follows:

Central Thailand: Ang Thong, Chai Nat, Lop Buri, Nakhon Nayok, Samut Songkhram, Saraburi, Sing Buri, and Suphan Buri

Eastern Thailand: Chanthaburi, Prachin Buri, Sa Kaeo, and Trat

Northern Thailand: Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Kamphaeng Phet, Lampang, Lamphun, Mae Hong Son, Nan, Nakhon Sawan, Phayao, Phetchabun, Phichit, Phitsanulok, Phrae, Sukhothai, Uthai Thani, and Uttaradit

North-Eastern Thailand: Amnat Charoen, Bueng Kan, Buri Ram, Chaiyaphum, Kalasin, Khon Kaen, Loei, Maha Sarakham, Mukdahan, Nakhon Phanom, Nakhon Ratchasima, Nong Bua Lam Phu, Nong Khai, Roi Et, Sakon Nakhon, Si Sa Ket, Surin, Ubon Ratchathani, Udon Thani, and Yasothon

Southern Thailand: Chumphon, Krabi, Pattani, Phang Nga, Phatthalung, Phuket, Satun, and Trang.

Restaurants across the country can now resume in-house dining, with various restrictions based on their risk status. In the dark red zones, dining in is permitted until 9pm, with take away service allowed until 11pm. In red zones, dining in has been extended to 11pm. In orange zones, dining-in hours can return to normal. Of note, however, is that the ban on the sale and consumption of alcohol in restaurants remains in force across the country.

All other disease prevention measures remain in place, including mandatory mask-wearing outside of the home and the closure of “high risk” venues such as nightclubs, bars, karaoke bars, and massage parlours. Department stores, shopping malls and community malls must close by 9pm and refrain from holding promotional activities.

In dark red zones, there is a ban on gatherings of more than 20 people, with this number extended to 50 people in red and orange zones. In Phuket, an orange zone, officials have stipulated a ban on people visiting each other’s homes, with only those residing at a property permitted to be there.

In dark red and red provinces, convenience stores and markets can only open between 4am and 11pm, while they can return to normal operating hours in orange zones. In addition, people in dark red zones are urged to cancel interprovincial travel or to submit to strict health screening. Businesses in the private sector are asked to allow employees work from home if possible.

SOURCE: TAT News

 

Want more from the Thaiger family?

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS for instant updates on your mobile
📧 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🔔 Subscribe to or Join our YouTube channel for daily video updates

Continue Reading

Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Covid UPDATE Wednesday: 3,394 new infections and 29 deaths

Tim Newton

Published

on

Today the public health department has reported 3,394 new cases and 29 new Covid-related deaths. 1,498 of today’s cases come from Thailand’s prisons (more below). Taking the shameful inmate toll out of the equation and the trend is still steady with around 2,000 – 2,500 new cases each day over the past 3 weeks across Thailand.

Around the world the trends for new infections and deaths are starting to fall quite quickly.

Covid UPDATE Wednesday: 3,394 new infections and 29 deaths | News by Thaiger

• Roll up, roll up your sleeves. But the Thai PM says… hold on! PM Prayut Chan-o-cha has poured cold water on walk-in vaccination centres for Covid vaccinations. In the past week the public health department has been rushing to set up private vaccination locations around the country to hasten the roll out of vaccines for the first public vaccine category next month.

PM Prayut told a cabinet meeting yesterday he didn’t prefer the idea of the walk-in centres (Central Lad Phrao was already to open as yesterday) because “people would turn up in droves causing chaos”. He was particularly worried about centre around Bangkok where there is a population of 8 million+

The PM has asked that the Mor Prom app is working properly with registrations preferred so the Government can monitor the demand and act accordingly. The government says they’re working on an English, and other languages, version of Mor Prom to open registration for non-Thais soon.

• The Department of Corrections reports that there are now 11,670 prisoners infected with Covid in 13 prisons across Thailand.

• A major Japanese medical association is calling on Tokyo and the International Olympic Committee to cancel the 2020 Tokyo Games. The Games are set to start on July 23.

The appeal, made in a letter to Japanese PM Yoshihide Suga and comes amid concerns that the health-care system in Asia’s second-largest economy cannot accommodate both the potential medical needs of thousands of international athletes, coaches and media while fighting yet another spike in coronavirus infections.

• The Chon Buri (including Pattaya) public health officials announced 39 new and confirmed cases of Covid and 1 more death today. According to The Pattaya News, “officials are asking for the public to remain working from home if possible and especially to avoid small social gatherings with people who are not members of your own household until the situation improves”.

As usual we will have an update of all the provincial totals this afternoon.

SOURCES: Nation Thailand | FRB

 

Want more from the Thaiger family?

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS for instant updates on your mobile
📧 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🔔 Subscribe to or Join our YouTube channel for daily video updates

Continue Reading

Follow Thaiger by email:

Thailand3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism3 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism3 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism3 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8

Trending