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Govt steps back from fight with FEER

Legacy Phuket Gazette



Govt steps back from fight with FEER | The Thaiger

BANGKOK (AFP): The government today demanded that the Hong Kong-based current affairs magazine, the Far Eastern Economic Review (FEER), apologize for an article published in January, or face the expulsion of its two Bangkok-based journalists. FEER’s Rodney Tasker and Shawn Crispin have lodged an appeal against deportation orders served at the weekend, after they were named on Friday in an immigration blacklist, for allegedly posing a threat to national security. Thai Foreign Minister Surakiart Sathirathai said the government still guaranteed freedom of the press in Thailand, but when reporters infringed on “national security” the nation had to act. But amid mounting internal and external criticism over the government’s move, Surakiart suggested the government may try to find a way to extricate itself from the impasse. “There could be a way to solve the problem, like explaining that they didn’t intend to make a report which damaged the country,” he said in a radio interview. National Police Chief General Sant Sarutanond also demanded that the magazine apologize and that the reporters reveal their sources for the January 10 article which, he said, had damaged “international confidence in Thailand”. “We asked them to explain where they got the information, so that we can take action against the sources and they will be free,” he said late yesterday. FEER rejected the allegations that Crispin and Tasker — or the other two Hong Kong-based employees for the weekly news magazine named on the blacklist — represented a threat to national security. “No one in the Thai government has pointed out any factual inaccuracies, nor asked for a correction of any inaccuracies,” said publisher Philip Rezvin, who is named in the list, along with editor Michael Vatikiotis. Opposition Democrat Party member Akapol Sorasuchart also called on the government to make it clear what offence the journalists had committed. “There has been no clear explanation from the government yet,” he told reporters. Last month, police ordered the edition containing the article to be taken off newsstands, saying it violated press laws. The deportation threats have sparked a rising tide of protest, culminating in a statement from the US State Department, which said its ambassador to Thailand, Darryl Johnson, had raised the matter in a meeting with Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra. “We are concerned about the prospect that Thailand may bar certain journalists from working in or entering the country for publishing reports critical of the government,” said State Department spokesman Richard Boucher. “We encourage Thailand to uphold its reputation as a strong supporter of freedom of the press consistent with its constitution and its past practices. A free press is an essential element of any democracy.”

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Hermès opens its first store in Phuket at Central Floresta

The Thaiger & The Nation



Hermès opens its first store in Phuket at Central Floresta | The Thaiger

Hermès has opened of its first store in Phuket at Central Floresta, the newly opened lifestyle shopping destination in the heart of the island, opposite Central Festival.

As Hermès’ first venture outside the Thai capital, the new Hermès Phuket store makes a significant statement of expansion and confidence in the market. The new address in this world-renowned island will allow the growing population of local residents, along with domestic and international tourists, to discover the abundant variety of Hermès métiers and savoir-faire.

Designed by the Parisian architecture agency RDAI, the elegant 172 m² retail space is located by the shopping centre’s main entrance and benefits from a double exposure with an exterior and an interior façade.

A bamboo claustra follows the line of the mall’s exterior glass, filtering the daylight that bathes the indoor space, and further illustrates Hermès’ high regard for local craftsmanship. The interior façade is composed of a refined lacquered metal, featuring a large window display, complemented by four recesses with illuminated silk scarves.

Upon entering the store, visitors are welcomed by the House’s ex-libris and signature Grecques lights, designed for Hermès in 1925. The store is decorated with natural and local materials – bamboo floors and claustra, cognac toned Cherrywood walls, toffee coloured silk and fibre fabrics – tastefully blending various elements of Thai culture and modern architecture. The soft colour palette evokes the sand and the sun in their various shades, providing a delightfully serene and convivial atmosphere.

The overall volume is divided into two main areas by the feminine silk grid facing the entrance. The first one, with the iconic Faubourg pattern mosaic floor, allows guests to explore the silk, fashion jewellery, fragrance, art of living, and equestrian departments.

Opposite the leather goods display, an intimate space invites guests to uncover the watch and jewellery collections. Further along, one can discover the women and men’s universes. A sand coloured carpet on the floor outlines the area dedicated to the shoe collections, enriched by a delicate custom-made bamboo light module as the ceiling centrepiece.

Hermès opens its first store in Phuket at Central Floresta | News by The Thaiger Hermès opens its first store in Phuket at Central Floresta | News by The Thaiger Hermès opens its first store in Phuket at Central Floresta | News by The Thaiger

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Red car ‘gun flasher’ arrested in Phuket

The Thaiger



Red car ‘gun flasher’ arrested in Phuket | The Thaiger

Phuket police have arrested and are questioning the driver of a red sedan following Friday’s incident on Thepkasattri Road in Srisoonthorn where he appeared to wave a gun out of his driver’s window (video in the link below).

Manop Sangpal was tracked down by police but they’ve confirmed that Mr Manop’s ‘gun’ was just a BB gun, not a firearm.

The video of the man driving the red sedan and waving the ‘gun’ out of the driver’s window spread around social media on Friday afternoon after a driver following recorded the incident and posted it.

Read the story and see the video below…

Police hunting for driver who threatened others with a gun on Phuket road – VIDEO

On the video the red Ford sedan cuts in front of the car with the dashcam then veers to the left lane while the driver waves the gun out of his window near Wat Srisoonthorn.

Police say Mr Manop was arrested at lunchtime yesterday (Saturday) in a workers camp in Soi Sukapibal where he lives with his Burmese wife and family.

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Tsunami advisory for Andaman Coast – all clear

The Thaiger



Tsunami advisory for Andaman Coast – all clear | The Thaiger

An advisory was sent out last night about two earth tremors registering 5.0 and 5.2 magnitude centered on the Andaman Islands, 620 kilometres north west of Phuket.

The National Disaster Warning Centre sent out an advisory to Governors of six Andaman Coast provinces to be on alert for tsunami warnings and more earthquake activity.

There has been no tsunami activity registered along the Andaman coastlines.

Tsunami advisory for Andaman Coast - all clear | News by The Thaiger

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