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Thailand News Today | 45 day tourist visa, Cher campaign for gorilla, Pattani arrests | Dec 11

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Last day of the week and the middle of the long of a 4 day long weekend for Thailand. Be safe on the roads and we’ll see you on Monday. All the latest news will continue on thethaiger.com.

45 day tourist visa exemption proposal to be presented to Cabinet

After the prime minister told officials to hurry up and relax restrictions for foreigners entering Thailand, the recent proposal to extend the on-arrival visa exemption for tourists from 30 to 45 days is quickly moving forward and will be presented to the Cabinet next week.

The 15 days added on to the visa exemption is intended to make up for the 2 week quarantine required for those entering the country. Officials hope the scheme will lure in more foreign visitors.

At the moment, foreign tourists can only enter Thailand under the pre-issued 60 day tourist visa or the new Special Tourist Visa, which is allows a 90 day stay that can be extended twice, adding up to around 9 months.

The 45 day visa exemption would apply to 56 countries and territories that are currently under the 30 day visa exemption scheme.

Foreigners can also re-enter Thailand under a handful of existing visas. As usual we’d urge anyone thinking of visiting Thailand at this time to contact their local embassy… we understand there’s been a lot of difficulty at this time and can only suggest that you persist.

Thai Airways delays resumption of domestic flights due to local Covid-19 cases

Thai Airways flights to Phuket and Chiang Mai were supposed to start back up on Christmas day, but the recent Covid-19 local transmissions have led the airline to push the relaunch date back.

Now the Thai Airways flights from Bangkok will take off on January 1, but if the virus continues to be an issue in the north, the airline might decide to delay the flights again.

At least 17 Thais tested positive for Covid-19 after illegally entering Thailand from Myanmar’s border district Tachileik. They evaded the mandatory quarantine and some travelled to Bangkok, Chiang Mai and other provinces before testing positive.

Things haven’t been easy for Thai Airways this year. Along with being buried in a debt of nearly 300 billion baht, more than 20 people are currently under investigation for being involved in systemic corruption and mismanagement at the airline.

Protesters gather at Bangkok’s United Nations, call to abolish lèse majesté law

Pro-democracy protesters gathered in front of the United Nations building in Bangkok yesterday, calling on the organisation to step in after many activists were recently arrested for allegedly violating Thailand’s controversial lèse majesté law.

The law carries prison sentences from 3 to 15 years for insulting or defamatory statements about the Thai Monarchy. Activists say the law violates human rights. Yesterday was Constitution Day in Thailand… the current constitution just one of the things the protesters are rallying for change.

4 men arrested for alleged involvement in police officer killing in Pattani

After a large-scale manhunt, police and military investigators arrested 4 men for their alleged involvement in the murder of a police officer in the southern province Pattani.

The police officer was riding his motorcycle when he was shot by a pillion rider on another bike. The rider, dressed in women’s clothes and wearing a headscarf, pulled out a M16 assault rifle. When the officer fell, the attacker got off their bike and shot the officer point blank with a 9mm handgun before stealing the officer’s pistol and fleeing the scene.

Police used surveillance camera footage in the area to track down the suspects.

Cher calls for Thailand’s only gorilla to be rescued after 30 years in Bangkok shopping mall zoo

US singer Cher has taken to Twitter to expose the plight of a Thai gorilla known as Bua Noi, who has lived above a shopping mall in Bangkok for 30 years.

With her mate having died several years ago, she is Thailand’s only gorilla.

Bua Noi living at the Pata Zoo, on the top floor of a Bangkok shop mall, has captured the singer’s attention. The zoo has been in operation since the late 1980s and is home to various species of monkey, reptiles and birds, over 2 floors. It has been condemned by animal welfare activists and others as completely unfit for purpose.

Kata Rocks Superyacht Rendezvous returns to Kata in Phuket

The Kata Rocks Superyacht Rendezvous is back again this year, even though much of Phuket has been wiped out from the lack of tourists. The event, held at the Kata Rocks resort on the headland at Kata Beach, was still able to attract some of the region’s biggest boats for the invitation only event.

It’s open to both sailing and motor yachts measuring over 24 meters in length, visiting or based in Phuket and is part of the larger project to promote Phuket as a destination for visiting super yachts and crews throughout the year to enjoy the island, its marinas and the magnificent scenery around the Andaman Sea coastline.

The event kicked off yesterday and runs through to the end of tomorrow.

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7 Comments

7 Comments

  1. Avatar

    BS

    Friday, December 11, 2020 at 4:05 pm

    Another attempt from BKK government with is completely out of sense – if they think peopel are so crazy to get back they will stay in quarantine 14 days – and after then are added 15 days extra- show how far from the reality they live. — just carry on and put new nails in the coffin of thailands tourist industry —

    • Avatar

      PHIL

      Friday, December 11, 2020 at 9:02 pm

      CORRECT 100 % . NOT EVERYONE CAN AFFORD 2 WEEKS JAIL ,45 DAYS HOLYDAYS , AND PAY QUARANTINE, AND HOLYDAYS AFTER.

  2. Avatar

    Roberto

    Friday, December 11, 2020 at 5:09 pm

    Another nonsense, the tourists who come. who come to Thailand do not have 45 days of vacation, and in any case no one is willing to spend 14 days locked in a hotel room! Soon Bali and other tourist destinations will reopen to tourists without limitations, and Thailand will be cut off!

  3. Avatar

    RA

    Friday, December 11, 2020 at 6:46 pm

    The number of days on the visa has absolutely NOTHING to do with why people won’t come. Why would anyone come on a holiday just to stay in quarantine for 14 days? THEY WON’T DO IT. If people are coming on the STV they are not tourist. They’re here for some other reason.

  4. Avatar

    Jason

    Saturday, December 12, 2020 at 8:21 am

    The only way the Thai Government will realise these measures won’t work, is when no tourists show up. That no tourists will come under these conditions is as certain as the tide rising and falling. But if you are blind you don’t see the tide rising and falling ….do you!

    • Avatar

      Whiro

      Saturday, December 12, 2020 at 4:52 pm

      No you don’t, but you must hear or feel the tide 🙂
      Thai gov must be deaf, not only being blind.

  5. Avatar

    jason

    Sunday, December 13, 2020 at 11:49 pm

    The Thai government is not blind, the 6 people that run the country and have big bank accounts are not hurting and don’t give hoot about anybody els, like most Thais very self centered

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

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

A man has driven his car onto the runway at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport while allegedly under the influence of illicit substances. AOT officials are now trying to figure out how the man was able to breach airport security and drive onto the airport runway.

Airport security vehicles were seen escorting the car off the runway, passing by waiting planes. The Airports of Thailand released a statement saying the man was “quickly” apprehended.

Reports say methamphetamine was found in the man’s vehicle. He was arrested on charges of entering a restricted area of an airport, illegal possession of drugs and driving under the influence.

A senior police officer in Koh Samui faces charges for allegedly raping a 21 year old Burmese woman at the Bo Phut Police Station on the island. The officer, who was an investigation squad leader at the station, has been suspended and is now in detention at the Koh Samui Court.

The senior sergeant major allegedly took the woman, who had been arrested on drug charges, out of her cell at around 2am Wednesday and to another room at the Bo Phut Police station where he allegedly sexually abused her. She was then taken back to her cell.

The woman reported the incident to the Myanmar Embassy which then filed a complaint directly with the Bo Phut police chief. The senior officer was immediately suspended. He now faces rape charges and is now in detention.

In another case of police and officials behaving badly…. At least 33 police officers and other government officials are being investigated for their role in the illegal smuggling of migrant workers into Thailand. The people smuggling business is thought to be at the root of Thailand’s second wave of Covid-19, with countless migrants helped across the border without undergoing mandatory quarantine or any form of health checks.

According to the deputy national police chief, at least 33 people are thought to have been involved in smuggling migrant workers over the Thai-Burmese border, in the Sangkhla Buri district of Kanchanaburi. This includes over 20 police officers, with the remainder being state officials. The level of involvement varies, with some turning a blind eye to the people smuggling and others more actively involved.

The government has declared an amnesty for all illegal migrant workers, in the hope it will encourage them to come forward for Covid-19 tests. They will then will be allowed to work in the Kingdom for 2 years. Registration opens today and run until February 13.

The Indonesian island of Sulawesi was shook by a 6.2 magnitude earthquake shortly after midnight today, toppling over buildings and injuring hundreds. Reports are continuously being updated as rescuers search through rubble. As of early this afternoon, at least 34 people have been killed… the toll is expected to rise.

Thousands evacuated their homes in West Sulawesi. Several buildings, including hotels, were severely damaged and many homes were flattened in coastal areas. A hospital was partially damaged and reports say more than a dozen patients and staff were trapped under the rubble.

The area was first hit by a 5.9 magnitude undersea quake yesterday. It damaged several buildings, but no deaths were reported.

A suicide prevention team is being created to help Thai people in despair at this time. The Health Minister, Anutin Charnvirakul, will chair the new committee. The ministries of Social Development and Human Security, Education, and Justice, as well as several other government bodies, will all play a role in the committee’s work.

Anutin says the committee will work to ensure people are aware of their rights and welfare entitlements, as well as trying to help them manage their problems. The team will also screen people considered “at risk”, such as those battling substance addition, people who have previously tried to commit suicide, and those who are suffering with mental illness.

Since 2017, the suicide rate has been on the increase and is particularly prevalent among males, who make up the majority of victims. 2020 figures show that the financial implication of Covid-19 is playing a significant role in deaths by suicide.

Thailand’s Tourism Minister has confirmed a proposal to charge foreign tourists a fee of 300 baht per visit. The fee will be used to develop tourist destinations as well as providing visitors with insurance benefits while in the Kingdom. The proposal has been approved by the National Tourism Policy Committee.

The fee is designed to ensure anyone who gets sick or is injured can receive medical treatment. 34 baht of the 300 baht fee will go towards insurance coverage.

Despite the introduction of the Special Tourist Visa, Thailand has struggled to regain much of its lost international tourism. The mandatory 14-day quarantine is thought to play a large part in people’s reluctance to visit, particularly if paired with quarantine or self-isolation restrictions in their home countries.

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A wild elephant kills 80 year old camper in Khao Yai

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A wild elephant kills 80 year old camper in Khao Yai | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Representational

A wild elephant killed an 80 year old man camping in Khao Yai National Park early this morning. Park officials believe the bull elephant was in musth, which is when the elephant has rise in reproductive hormones and becomes aggressive.

80 year old Prayot Jitbun was sleeping in his tent when the elephant attacked. Other nearby campers alerted park officials saying the elephant had walked around the Prayot’s car before becoming angry and stomping on his tent, then throwing the man into a tree.

Fresh fruit was inside the man’s car and park officials believe the smell of the fruit attracted the elephant. Park officials suspect the animal became angry and attacked when it couldn’t reach the fruit.

The wild elephant, known as “Phlai Due” had been fitted with a tracking collar earlier this month. The officials say this is the first person attacked by an elephant in the park this year and ensure it won’t happen again.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

40 arrested in a suspected gambling house in Nonthaburi

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40 arrested in a suspected gambling house in Nonthaburi | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Nation Thailand

Last night, police raided a house in Nonthaburi and arrested 40 people for allegedly gambling.

According to the deputy chief of the Central Investigation Bureau, 33 are Thais and 7 are migrant workers of the casino. The officials also confiscated decks of cards of the Dragon-Tiger game, plastic chips and some cash as evidence.

During the raid, the migrant workers allegedly revealed that the gambling operations at the home had only been going on for 2 days and that the owner planned to move it to other locations.

Police have been cracking down on gambling after the Covid-19 outbreak at a Rayong gambling den in line with the PM’s order made last week to shut down the illegal venues and tracking down “influential figures.”

SOURCE: National Thailand

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