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Kiwi travel warning includes Phuket



Kiwi travel warning includes Phuket | Thaiger
Phuket NEWS Hound

– A daily digest of news from around the world compiled by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

PHUKET: Radio New Zealand says that country’s ambassador to Thailand has advised New Zealanders in Bangkok to “strongly consider” leaving the city.

Ambassador Bede Corry says the trouble may spread to other areas like Phuket and that all non-essential travel to Thailand should be deferred.

Mr Corry says ‘red shirts’ from outside Bangkok are in the city, coming in behind the military. He describes the situation as fluid and dangerous.

The New Zealand Embassy has been closed since late last week, as have the American and British embassies. The Australian embassy is also closed until further notice.

A New Zealander working for an ambulance service in Bangkok says the situation is like a civil war and the central city is in chaos.

Phuket jet-ski death case closed

New Straits Times
The Singaporean involved in last month’s fatal jet-ski collision in Phuket has returned home.

The Sunday Times reports that it has learned from the Thai police that the case was officially closed last week.

Mr Tang Jun Han, 20, returned to Singapore about two weeks ago, almost a month after his jet ski crashed into and killed his close friend Loh Ying Jie, also 20, on April 2 at Patong Beach.

Phuket a developers paradise?

Bangkok Post
Patum Design & Develop is aggressively expanding franchises for its homebuilding to offset declining trade in Bangkok. Phuket is one of the main new markets the firm is entering this year after opening a franchise outlet in the resort province last month.

“We’ve seen high purchasing power and a huge demand from professional homebuilders in the self-built home markets outside of Greater Bangkok, especially in Chiang Mai and Phuket,” said chief executive Sitiporn Suwanasut.

Mr Sitiporn said Phuket offers high potential as a market due to the diverse range of buyers.

About 2,000 to 2,400 self-built homes are constructed each year in Phuket, where small local contractors account for 80% to 90% of the market.

Mr Sitiporn said he was not worried about competition with local contractors, however, as the Phuket market was more ‘who has more to offer’.

The firm says it has fielded inquiries from eight clients to build houses worth a total of 40-50 million baht since opening its Phuket office.

Bangkok resembles war zone
Three days of street battles in Bangkok have left at least 33 people dead and 239 wounded.

A luxury hotel overlooking the sprawling protest site came under gunfire earlier this morning and was rattled by an explosion, prompting guests to shelter in the basement.
Three commercial buildings in another area were gutted by fire.

The red shirts, whose vast base in the heart of Bangkok is under siege by troops, said they were ready to enter peace talks with the government “immediately” as long as the United Nations mediated.

The idea was quickly shot down by the government, which has repeatedly warned foreign governments not to meddle in its affairs.

ASEAN critical

Asia One
Singapore warned Saturday that the situation in Bangkok may “slip out of control” amid a flare-up in violence, saying the consequences will be “extremely grave” for Thailand and the ASEAN region.

Unless all parties immediately exercise restraint and resume dialogue, we fear that the situation may slip out of the control of all parties.

Owing to a policy of non-interference, ASEAN states do not normally comment on the internal affairs of fellow members, but analysts say there are signs the regional bloc is slowly easing away from this principle.

Singapore also reminded its citizens against non-essential travel to Bangkok and advised those who are already in the Thai capital to stay indoors.

— Gazette Editors


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