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Thailand blocks natural borders following Myanmar coup, bounty for human traffickers increases

Caitlin Ashworth

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Thailand blocks natural borders following Myanmar coup, bounty for human traffickers increases | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Bangkok Biz News
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With thousands of Burmese people expected to flee to Thailand following the military coup in Myanmar, Thai immigration police say they have blocked at least 7 natural border passageways. Thai immigration police chief Sompong Chingduang says he estimates around 400,000 Burmese migrants are looking to enter Thailand, adding that the bounty for the arrest of human traffickers has increased.

“We have learned that the bounty offered for the arrest of Myanmar human traffickers has risen to 15,000 baht per person, while that of Chinese traffickers has risen to 50,000 baht per person. Police have been told to be on the lookout for these labour traffickers.”

Sompong says he’s concerned that an influx of illegal migrants will cause another Covid-19 outbreak. Just earlier this week, a Royal Thai Army commander played down the risk of a surge of illegal migrants fleeing Myanmar and reassured the public that anyone trying to enter Thailand will be arrested.

“We are closely monitoring the situation. Burmese people themselves may not be affected, but I told soldiers to step up inspections at the border in case Burmese politicians or VIPs enter into the country to hide.”

Thais started worrying about the virus reaching Thailand when Myanmar reported a spike in cases back in mid-September. Over the next month, as infections continued to spread, Thai authorities tightened patrol along the border and used barbed wire to block natural passageways.

After the major outbreak at the Samut Sakhon seafood market, infecting hundreds of Burmese migrants, the Royal Thai Army admitted that they cannot stop border breaches and keep people from entering illegally.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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11 Comments

11 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Friday, February 5, 2021 at 5:09 pm

    Why do they call them human traffickers. They are tour guides.
    They take Burmese on a pleasant jungle walk over the mountains into Thailand.
    French guides took escaped prisoners of war over the Pyrenees into Spain, They were not called human traffickers.
    The Thai just want to make these cuddly tour guides look bad, by calling them unpleasant names.

    • Avatar

      Ynwaps

      Saturday, February 6, 2021 at 1:33 pm

      Thailand thinking they can hold the borders is cute. They couldn’t stop them before, what makes them think they could stop them now when they’re actually wanting to escape the military dictatorship.

  2. Avatar

    Kuhn David

    Friday, February 5, 2021 at 9:36 pm

    The bounty will be enforced, unless the accused is a rich Thai who is tied in with the local police and politicians. In that instance, Justice will look the other way.

  3. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Friday, February 5, 2021 at 9:52 pm

    How much is the bounty by the way, and if I collect will I be accused of working in Thailand without a work permit?


    .
    lol

  4. Avatar

    intlbankster

    Saturday, February 6, 2021 at 9:46 am

    All borders should be open and no govt should maintain them. If it’s ok to drive from phuket to Chiang mai, it should be ok to drive from Myanmar to phuket.

    Theres no reason an invisible line needs to be artificially enforced. That’s just madness.

    If anything, border enforcement actually makes thais less safe.

    If there weren’t borders and someone was sick with covid, they just go get treatment at neatest clinic, but with this set up, they stay hidden among the people for fear of trouble

    • Avatar

      Jim Ferrante

      Sunday, February 7, 2021 at 1:31 pm

      Liberalism is a disease

  5. Avatar

    Grumpy John

    Saturday, February 6, 2021 at 1:21 pm

    “the Royal Thai Army admitted that they cannot stop border breaches and keep people from entering illegally.” If Prayut releases a “Shoot to kill” order I am pretty sure the Burmese will stop coming after the word gets around.

  6. Avatar

    Issan John

    Sunday, February 7, 2021 at 12:36 am

    If the Immigration Police Chief has only “learned” how much the bounty is, then who’s paying the bounty?

    Gen question, as I can’t follow that.

  7. Avatar

    Ben

    Sunday, February 7, 2021 at 7:16 am

    This is the real threat to Thailand’s coveted non-COVID status. Imagine if an invading army were pouring over the border to kill 50,000 Thai’s. The army, navy and air force would be doing everything in their power to stop the invasion. If they don’t plug the holes along the borders then that’s what’ll happen.

    The army has already said it can’t stop an invasion of this type. A CYA move that wasn’t acceptable and has been walked back. They have 360,850 active military personnel plus 200,000 more in the reserves. They’d better get to work and act like an invasion might come to their borders.

  8. Avatar

    Jim Ferrante

    Sunday, February 7, 2021 at 1:32 pm

    Liberalism is a disease

  9. Avatar

    wilko

    Sunday, February 7, 2021 at 4:46 pm

    at the end of the day Thailand and Burma have a lot in common, they are both run by the military and there is definitely a mutual commonality amongst the leaders. So don’t expect much sympathy from Thailand for the oppressed Burmese.

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Caitlin Ashworth is a writer from the United States who has lived in Thailand since 2018. She graduated from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies in 2016. She was a reporter for the Daily Hampshire Gazette In Massachusetts. She also interned at the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia and Sarasota Herald-Tribune in Florida.

Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Public Health Minister gets first Covid-19 vaccine shot in Thailand

Caitlin Ashworth

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Public Health Minister gets first Covid-19 vaccine shot in Thailand | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Facebook/ Anutin Charnvirakul

Thailand’s Covid-19 vaccine campaign started with Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul who was jabbed with China’s Sinovac vaccine. PM Prayut Chan-o-cha was initially planned to be the first to kick off Thailand’s immunisation plan with the AstraZeneca vaccine, but due to problems with paperwork, the prime minister’s injection was postponed. Doctors advised Prayut to get the AstraZeneca vaccine due to his age. Prayut is 66 and doctors say the Sinovac vaccine has been declared safe for people ages 18 to 59.

Both shipments of the Sinovac and AstraZeneca vaccines arrived last week, the AstraZeneca vaccine still needs to be endorsed by the Medical Science Department. Anutin says the pharmaceutical company has not submitted documents and samples needed for the endorsement.

Along with Anutin, a number of other government officials and health professionals were vaccinated against the coronavirus. Anutin’s shot was administered by Thailand’s top virologist Yong Poovorawan.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Bangkok

Royal Thai Police accused of “ticket” promotion system to buy senior positions

Caitlin Ashworth

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Royal Thai Police accused of “ticket” promotion system to buy senior positions | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Nation Thailand

The Royal Thai Police are being accused of using so-called “elephant tickets” to buy their way into promotions and pay their way up the police force’s chain of command. The corruption among the police force and the buying of positions without meeting the requirements for a promotion has been a longtime problem, according to the Bangkok Post.

The “elephant ticket” issue was recently brought to light by an opposition MP at a censure debate who said it fast tracked the promotion system and allowed some people who were unqualified and undeserving to raise their rank. Some Thais have protested the “elephant ticket.” Many gathered in front of the Royal Thai Police headquarters in Bangkok last week, including one person who dressed up as an elephant.

At the censure debate on February 19, Move Forward Party MP Rangsiman Rome called out PM Prayut Chan-o-cha, who chairs the Police Commission overseeing the Royal Thai Police, and said the prime minister allowed the “elephant ticket” promotions. Prayut later said there were problems within the police force and that he would handle it.

Police who want a promotion need a ticket, which is basically just a reference or a stamp of approval from a senior officer or even a politician or business person. To get an “elephant ticket,” some can pay for the ticket. A source told the Post that positions for police superintendents cost between 5 to 10 million baht.

Others can get a ticket by doing favours for their superior or even just serving their superior for a long time, sources told the Bangkok Post. The higher the position a senior officer has, the more tickets they have to give out.

To read the full special report by the Bangkok Post, click HERE.

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Crime

Woman talks about the life of a Thai “pretty” after model’s death

Caitlin Ashworth

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Woman talks about the life of a Thai “pretty” after model’s death | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Instagram/ wawa_manika

Following the news of a model who died after working as a hostess at a Bangkok party, Thai media spoke with a woman, known in Thailand as a “pretty,” about what it’s like to work in the lucrative, yet shady Thai model entertainment industry where many work as hostesses at parties and events that often involve alcohol, drugs and sex work.

“Miss Cake” told the Thai news outlet Daily News that pretties are sent to parties by “modelling agencies.” The parties are even categorized depending on if drugs or sex are involved. Apparently the parties are either “En-Up,” “En-V” or just “En” for entertainment. En-Up means drugs are involved, while En-V means the pretties will offer sexual services. Other pretties work at promotional events like auto shows. Since nightclubs and other entertainment venues in Bangkok have been closed due to the pandemic, many of the parties are now held at private homes.

If a pretty is working at an En-Up party, Miss Cake says that means there will be ecstasy, known as “khanom,” the Thai word for a dessert or snack. She says good “khanom” shipped from overseas costs around 900 to 1,000 baht while the poor quality, Thai-made drugs cost 500 baht. Just about every pretty takes drugs, she says. If mixed with ketamine, Miss Cake says it can be dangerous.

Daily News spoke with Miss Cake following the death of a 33 year old Witchayaporn “Wawa” Wisetsombat who worked died in a hospital after working as a hostess at a party in Bangkok’s Chatuchak district. She had been hired by a modelling agency to serve drinks at a private party. Her younger sister told the Bangkok Post that Wawa was a product presenter and never sold sex or used narcotics. Doctors told the Post Wawa died from respiratory and blood system failure. They are still waiting for the results for a toxicology test.

The death of another model back in 2019 shed light on the abuse and danger many pretties face in the industry. 25 year old Thitima “Lunlabelle” Noraphanpiphat died from “extreme alcohol intoxication,” according to an autopsy report. Her dead body was found in the lobby of a Bangkok condominium. 6 people were found guilty for involvement in Lunlabelle’s death.

Abuse is common in the industry and many women working as pretties are often pressured into drinking excessive amounts of alcohol. The work of pretties is looked down upon in Thai society. Due to the stigma, many due not file complaints when they are abused.

SOURCE: Thai Visa

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