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Phuket villagers burn red flags

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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Phuket villagers burn red flags | The Thaiger

WICHIT, PHUKET: Villagers burned flags belonging to a band of red shirts who attempted to rally in front of the Thai naval base in Cape Panwa this morning, warning them: ‘You are not welcome here’.

A local man told the Gazette, “I don’t think they’ll come back, but if they do, we’re ready for a fight.”

At around 9:30am a band of some 10 red-shirted members of the United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship (UDD) gathered in front of the naval base intending to read a statement requesting support for their movement from the Royal Thai Navy.

The UDD supporters included a red-shirted foreigner accompanying his wife among their number.

Around 30 local villagers blocked the camp entrance, scuffling with the red shirts and letting them know in no uncertain terms that their presence was unwelcome.

“We don’t want to see any red shirts in our community. We live here in our village in peace,” one man said.

“They should have thought carefully before they did this, because it will affect tourism to Phuket and especially to this area,” he said.

“The navy co-operates with the locals here. We live happily together and have no problems with them,” he added.

Once the red shirts realized they would not be able to read their statement, they left the area in their cars about 30 minutes minutes later.

One villager said yellow-shirted members from the rival People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) would not get a free pass either.

“We’d have to consider the reason for them rallying first. If it would lead to damage to the community or give the area a bad reputation, we wouldn’t permit it,” he said.

The small UDD movement in Phuket has encountered problems in the past finding a platform from which to stage rallies on the island, despite their promises to keep them peaceful.

While the locally powerful PAD held a huge rally at the public park at Saphan Hin in April and closed down the Phuket International Airport for two days in late August 2008, the red shirts have found their own requests to rally far less well received.

Just after the Saphan Hin rally, Rajabhat Phuket University reversed a decision to allow UDD members to hold a seminar there, even after all the travel arrangements had been made.

The university, which previously hosted several PAD events on campus, backed down to student protests and said it will no longer allow any political parties to conduct activities on school grounds.

— Sitthipong Nongkaew



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Phuket

Slow loris released back into Phuket forest

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Slow loris released back into Phuket forest | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: Department of National Parks

Officers from of the Khao Phra Thaeo Non-Hunting Area have helped in the release of a slow loris back into the wild yesterday.

The Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation reports that the head of Khao Phra Thaeo Non-Hunting Area, Pongchart Chueahom, yesterday released the slow loris to the Khao Phra Thaeo Non-Hunting Are in Thalang.

The slow loris was found near a furniture factory in Thalang last week. It was being treated at a pet hospital before being handed over to Khun Pongchart when it was ready to be set free.

Slow loris released back into Phuket forest | News by The Thaiger Slow loris released back into Phuket forest | News by The Thaiger

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Phuket

Seastead structure dragged back to shore by Royal Thai Navy

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Seastead structure dragged back to shore by Royal Thai Navy | The Thaiger

A floating seastead has today been towed by a naval vessel back to the Port of Phuket in Cape Panwa. Meanwhile the Deputy PM Wissanu Krea-ngam is challenging the owners and builders of the structure to take the Thai Government and Navy to the International Court of Justice.

The Royal Thai Navy’s Third Fleet ventured out with a group of reporters on Saturday to inspect the floating seastead, the first of about 20 planned Ocean Builders for the open waters about 22km from Phuket’s Koh Racha Yai.

Nothing valuable was found on board the octagon-shaped steel and aluminium structure which was attached to a floating platform.

Two vessels were used in today’s operation. The living quarters were detached and placed on the first vessel and the second towed the floating platform to the shore for safe keeping pending legal action against its owner as well as the builder, Ocean Builders Company.

Dr. Wissanu said yesterday that Thai authorities were authorised to remove or dismantle the floating housing unit with or without the consent of its owner after finding the structure could pose a threat to Thai national security and sovereignty in accordance with Article 119 of the Criminal Code.

He said that the structure also posed an obstacle to vessels and was located not far from an oil rig.

Regarding the threat by Ocean Builders Company to sue the Thai government in the International Court of Justice for the removal, the deputy PM says he welcomes the move, noting that no government anywhere would allow a seastead settlement near their maritime territory.

Seasteader Chad Andrew Edwartowski and his Thai wife, Mrs. Nadia Summergirl, are wanted by the Thai police for questioning after Thai immigration revoked the American’s non-immigrant visa and blacklisted him.

SOURCE: Thai PBS

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Phuket

Phuket taxi slams into tree in Phattalung

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Phuket taxi slams into tree in Phattalung | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: Phattalung Rescue

Two people have sustained serious injuries after a Phuket taxi slammed into a tree in Phattalung last night.

Phattalung rescue workers were notified of the accident in Mueang Pattalung District at 7.57pm last night (Sunday).

They arrived at the scene to find the Phuket registered taxi resting in front of the big tree on the side of the road near a temple. The front of the vehicle had extensive damage following the collision.

The two people who sustained serious injuries were 58 year old Wanchai Srithong and 64 year old Jamras Srithong. They were both taken to the Phattalung Hospital.

Pattalung City Police are continuing their investigation. There has been no explanation given at this stage as to why a Phuket taxi was in Phattalung.

Phuket taxi slams into tree in Phattalung | News by The Thaiger Phuket taxi slams into tree in Phattalung | News by The Thaiger

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