Search Keywords:
Searched the site for keyword(s):  
Search again ordering:  alphabetical  newest-to-oldest  oldest-to-newest
Results - of matches
Search took seconds
               

Pro-Thaksin protest

Posted by hasekamp on 31 March 2007 at 19:03 PM
Protesters turned out at City Hall and Sanam Luang despite Prime Minister Surayud Chulanont's new bid to defuse tension by hinting that a ban on political activities may be lifted in September. About 4,000 people converged at City Hall's Lan Khon Muang public ground for a rally led by PTV, the satellite-based television station launched by former members of the Thai Rak Thai party founded by deposed prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra. Chatuporn Prompan, Nattavuth Saigua and Veera Musikhapong took turns criticising the Council for National Security (CNS) for its handling of southern unrest and appointment of the new board of the Airports of Thailand Plc (AoT) chaired by CNS deputy secretary-general Gen Saprang Kalayanamitr. Korkaew Pikulthong, a rally leader, told the crowds that distorted facts are behind the problems at Suvarnabhumi airport. He said the AoT board made the problems out to be corruption when they were actually physical flaws. "The board is out to destroy Mr Thaksin with Suvarnabhumi airport as the symbol of its mission," Mr Korkaew said. Mr Natthavuth said the CNS could not solve the southern insurgency and instead had decided to blame it on the Wada political group, which was formerly affiliated to Thai Rak Thai. The demonstrators at City Hall were urged to sign a petition urging Gen Prem Tinsulanonda be removed as president of the Privy Council, and to boycott a public referendum on a new charter now being drafted. They dispersed without incident. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


Category: Default

Safer driving through oath

Posted by hasekamp on 31 March 2007 at 18:59 PM
Bus drivers are being made to swear an oath to sacred deities in the latest attempt to persuade them to drive carefully and ensure passengers' safety. Provincial transport officer in Nakhon Rachasima, Anusorn Withurakorn, took 120 drivers of inner city minibuses, air-conditioned buses and inter-province buses to Wat Phra Narai Maharaj in Muang district yesterday. Before a row of monks and a principal Buddha image, they took an oath to exercise utmost caution on the road. It was part of a road safety campaign to improve the quality of provincial bus services following the bus fire in Saraburi's Muak Lek district on March 20 that killed 31 people, and to address continual complaints about careless driving, poor service and bad manners. The drivers pledged to drive carefully, observe traffic rules, abstain from drugs and alcohol, provide good service and to regularly check their vehicle's roadworthiness. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


Category: Default

Demonstration OK, but not against government

Posted by hasekamp on 28 March 2007 at 10:52 AM
Thailand's Council for National Security (CNS) chairman Sonthi Boonyaratkalin reaffirmed Wednesday that only legal measures will be applied to control protesters who will rally against the military council and the interim government on Friday. As for whether an emergency decree will be imposed to maintain peace and order in the city, The CNS chief said the decision rests with the prime minister as it is under the government's administrative authority. Members of several anti-coup groups - including former ruling Thai Rak Thai party MPs and supporters of ousted prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra - plan to gather again at Sanam Luang on Friday (March 30) after having held a rally last Friday. Gen. Sonthi, who also serves as Royal Thai Army Commander-in-Chief, said the National Police Bureau will increase police personnel assigned to monitor and contain the protesters, while the army will also deploy additional forces to help maintain the situation. No harsh measures have been put in place in response to the planned rally, said the army chief. Only normal legal measures will be employed in the first instance. (Source: Thai News Agency)


Category: Default

People from Queen's farm shot dead

Posted by hasekamp on 28 March 2007 at 10:47 AM
Two female employees working on HM the Queen's model farm project were shot dead at close range by gunmen on a motorbike. They were among four people killed yesterday in continuing violence in the far South. Elsewhere, an electrician was shot dead by suspected militants who drove up to a site where he was working on a new home - in Pattani's Yarang district - and started shooting.
Tosaporn Chansorn, 28, died on the way to the hospital while his colleague Sonthaya Tosakit, 22, was shot several times in the body. The two men are from Krabi province but had relocated to the restive area. Police said several construction workers were working at the time when two gunmen launched their attack in Tambon Prachan in Yarang district. Eyewitnesses said the gunmen simply walked up to the front door of the home being built and opened fire at the workers. (Source: The Nation)


Category: Default

Don Muang reopening almost flawless

Posted by hasekamp on 27 March 2007 at 19:21 PM
The reopening of Don Muang airport for domestic flights on Sunday generally ran smoothly, although there were some flight delays. A passenger also claimed she was misled by taxi drivers who told her that all domestic flights had been moved from Suvarnabhumi airport to Don Muang, causing her great inconvenience and added expense. The atmosphere at Don Muang was lively, with many passengers arriving around 4am to check in. THAI, Nok Air and One-Two-Go are operating from Don Muang. Deputy Transport Minister Sansern Wongcha-um said he was satisfied with the smooth operation at Don Muang airport. He praised Airports of Thailand (AoT) for its efficient management and readiness. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


Category: Default

New constitution will have less than 320 articles

Posted by hasekamp on 27 March 2007 at 19:16 PM
The Constitution Drafting Committee reports that the new constitution will have less than 320 articles. The President of the Constitution Drafting Committee (CDC) Prasong Soonsiri indicates that the new Constitution will include less than 320 articles. He says the final conclusion of the first draft will be issued in a seminar at Chonburi Province from April 6th-11th. As for the number of articles in the new Constitution, Mr. Prasong says the number depends on the details; however, the article numbers are expected to be less than 320. Mr. Prasong says 1 million copies of the first draft of new Constitution will be published and distributed to 76 provinces within April 19th, to solicit public input. In regard to the CDC meeting today, Mr. Prasong says today is the first day where each constitution article would be studied. (Source: Public Relations Department)


Category: Default

Chao Phraya water back to normal

Posted by hasekamp on 27 March 2007 at 19:13 PM
Bangkok Metropolitan Authority officials report that the water situation in the Chao Praya River has returned to normal. Bangkok Governor Apirak Kosayodhin reported on the water situation in the Chao Praya River. He says the average amount of dissolved oxygen in the river water is higher than 3 milligram per liter, an improvement over the past week. Governor Apirak said that dissolved oxygen in the Chao Phraya during the water pollution incident was reported to be as low as 1.5 milligram per liter.
However, the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) will be following up on the water situation to ensure that the water is clean enough for consumption. (Source: Public Relations Department)


Category: Default

Chiang Mai, Mae Hong Son made disaster zones

Posted by hasekamp on 24 March 2007 at 17:46 PM
The government declared Chiang Mai and Mae Hong Son disaster zones yesterday after air quality worsened over the weekend. A pall of thick smoke has blanketed the region since March 1. Deputy Prime Minister and Social Development and Human Security Minister Paiboon Wattanasiritham said the decision was made after the Pollution Control Department reported the deterioration in air quality. Paiboon is in charge of the crisis. Meanwhile, the National Park, Wildlife and Plant Conservation Department yesterday deployed 300 forest-fire fighters from the Northeast to Chiang Mai, Mae Hong Son, Phrae and other provinces to help battle burning fires. Daily fine-particle dust recordings in Mae Hong Son rose yesterday from 278 micrograms per cubic metre (mpcm) to 284 mpcm. The acceptable standard is 120 mpcm. Recordings in Chiang Mai rose to 196 mpcm, Paiboon reported. "The number of people treated for smoke-related health problems in Mae Hong Son has risen to more than 3,500 from about 400 on March 17. In Chiang Mai the number rose to more than 4,500 from almost 1,400," he said. In Chiang Rai fine-particle dust levels increased from 159 mpcm on Sunday to 201 mpcm yesterday. The number of residents seeking help for smoke-related conditions rose from almost 1,800 to 11,150. The situation in Lampang eased slightly with particle levels falling 3 mpcm to 131 mpcm. Declaring a disaster allows provincial governors to allocate funds to fight the crisis and impose outdoor-burning bans. (Source: The Nation)


Category: Default

Don Muang is ready for reopening

Posted by hasekamp on 22 March 2007 at 13:00 PM
Don Muang airport appears set for the return of scheduled domestic flights on Sunday, taking the pressure off Suvarnabhumi, which needs to fix its cracked runways, taxiways and other problems. "Everything has been tested, including the terminal, airline offices, parking space, security and other facilities," said Don Muang director Pinit Saraithong yesterday. Facilities at the airport include restaurants, snack bars, souvenir shops and taxi services, which will levy a 50-baht extra charge. Taxis would be under the supervision of the Land Transport Department. They would be subject to random checks for vehicle and passenger safety. Don Muang will handle about 140 flights a day operated by One-Two-Go, Nok Air and Thai Airways International (THAI). The three airlines will move almost 20,000 passengers a day through the airport, which now provides services only for chartered flights. Its airport code is DMKM, while Suvarnabhumi uses BKK. Passengers should note the codes on their tickets to avoid confusion. All THAI flights moving to Don Muang will do so on Sunday. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


Category: Default

New title for the King

Posted by hasekamp on 21 March 2007 at 17:25 PM
The cabinet yesterday designated the title of "Supreme Patron of Thai Cultural Heritage" to His Majesty the King, to mark Thai Cultural Heritage Preservation Day on April 2. Culture Minister Khaisri Sri-aroon said Prime Minister Surayud Chulanont will present the King with a gold plaque with the title engraved on it. Fine Arts Department chief Arak Sunghitakul said the title was in recognition of the King's continued support for the conservation of national cultural heritage. The first national museum to be set up outside Bangkok was built at the King's suggestion. During a visit in 1963 to Wat Ratchaburana in Ayutthaya, which was plundered by treasure hunters, the King suggested that works of art be kept in the province for local people to cherish. Meanwhile, the department is set to finish the construction of a national archive building in Pathum Thani's Khlong 5 area before the celebrations of His Majesty's 80th birthday on Dec 5. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


Category: Default

Emergency zones in the North

Posted by hasekamp on 20 March 2007 at 23:00 PM
The northern provinces of Chiang Mai and Mae Hong Son have been declared environmental emergency areas seriously affected by forest smoke. Last week the northernmost Chiang Rai province was declared a disaster zone as embattled provincial and other agencies confront raging brush- and forest fires throughout the region.
Deputy Prime Minister Paiboon Wattanasiritham said the current atmosphere over Chiang Mai and Mae Hong Son is so polluted by smoke from dry-season brushfires and the burning of forest by poachers, prompting the authorities to declare them to be emergency areas in which no further fires caused by humans will be tolerated. The declaration of a state of emergency empowers provincial governors to take prompt, stringent action to contain the fires sprawling over the northern region. On such emergency basis, those who might continue to torch the woods only to raise hazardous smoke would be faced with harsh legal action. (Source :Thai News Agency)


Category: Default

Paedophiles caught

Posted by hasekamp on 19 March 2007 at 18:14 PM
Thai police arrested four suspected paedophiles from Britain, Finland and the United States over the weekend at the notorious beach resort of Pattaya, initially charging them with abduction of minors. Police said on Monday they arrested the four men on Sunday, after complaints from the Child Protection Centre of Pattaya. They identified the men as British nationals Maurice John Praill and Stephen James Ellison, American Glenn Richard Allen, and Finnish citizen Ilkka Ylikojola. The arrests were by the Crimes Against Children and Women Suppression Division, which carried out the arrests. All four were arrested in police raids at their rented flats in Pattaya, which has become notorious in the past decade for its nightlife and sex industry. Child pornography and video equipment for making more porn were reportedly found in the four men's separate apartments.
If convicted, the four face up to 20 years each in prison. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


Category: Default

Toxic haze in the North

Posted by hasekamp on 18 March 2007 at 13:06 PM
A committee responsible for resolving Thailand's haze problem in the North will meet Monday as toxic air pollution and related respiratory health complaints in three northern provinces has worsened, Deputy Prime Minister Paiboon Wattanasiritham said Sunday. Mr. Paiboon, also minister of Social Development and Human Security, said he will chair the meeting after receiving reports stating that air pollution in Mae Hong Son, Chiang Mai and Lampang has worsened. The skies over northernmost Chiang Rai province have improved, he said, adding that another concern is that the so-called 'hot spots' -- fire zones -- in Thailand have increased to 593 from 387 locations. Of the total, 318 fires are found in the North and it is necessary to monitor closely on what is happening to the climate in the country. Air pollution in the region has worsened with continued bushfires in Thailand and neighboring Myanmar, where seasonal slash-and-burn farming practices in both countries have contributed to the large numbers of out-of-control fires. Many people in both countries have fallen ill with respiratory symptoms, Mr. Paiboon said. (Source: Thai News Agency)


Category: Default

Suspects arrested in deep South

Posted by hasekamp on 18 March 2007 at 13:03 PM
Security officials have rounded up 25 suspected Muslim insurgents from two districts in Yala and Narathiwat following the brutal massacre of eight Buddhists last week. The arrests were made with cooperation of police, army and interior ministry officials on Friday and Saturday. The arrests were announced in a press conference Sunday by Fourth Army Area Commander Lt Gen Wiroj Buacharoon and Narathiwat Police chief Pol Maj Gen Yongyuth Charoenwanit at the Narathiwat Provincial Hall. Officials stepped up crackdown against the insurgents in the southern provinces after nine van passengers were shot at their head in point blank range in Yala's Yaha district on Wednesday. Following the attack, the southern army imposed curfew in Yala's Yaha and Rusoh districts. Officials searched 22 areas in Yaha on Friday and Saturday and arrested 13 suspects. They also found maps with marking on the spot where the commuter van was attacked and seized 60 kilogrammes of fertilizers from the suspects. (Source: The Nation)


Category: Default

Anti junta protest

Posted by hasekamp on 18 March 2007 at 13:01 PM
Thai politics may continue to be trapped in a vicious cycle as there may be another power struggle before the referendum on the new constitution, which is slated for later this year, anti-coup leader Sombat Boonngam-anong asserted yesterday. Sombat, who led the thaisayno.com campaigns against the coup and the junta-sponsored constitution, and his allies staged a rally of about 2,000 people well into the night at Sanam Luang, railing against the junta and the Surayud Chulanont government, which they regard as "self-serving" and anti-democratic. "There may emerge another 'hero' who stages a coup and it may occur before the referendum. It's unfortunate that the people may not get the chance to determine the future of this junta by themselves," Sombat told The Nation, citing the deteriorating economy and continuing political divisions as factors. Nevertheless, the campaign to oppose the junta and the new charter now being drafted will continue, and the group has gathered 3,000 signatures of citizens who have pledged to reject the new charter, including some 500 who registered their intent to reject it during yesterday's rally. Sombat said the group plans to approach public figures and ask them to publicly oppose the charter right after its first draft is completed on April 19. (Source: The Nation)


Category: Default

Elephants can't find food and water

Posted by hasekamp on 17 March 2007 at 12:59 PM
Severe drought and "slash-and-burn" farming practices are forcing wild elephants to come out of their natural habitats in search of food, activists say. "The drought crisis, coupled with ecologically destructive farming practices, pose a major threat to natural sources of food and shelter for elephants in the wild," said Soraida Salwala, founder of the Friends of the Asian Elephant group, in an interview with the Bangkok Post. "Undoubtedly, the drastic climate change is now a cause of concern because if it drags on and worsens, the well-being of hundreds of elephants will be in jeopardy," she said. In Kanchanaburi province, Pinan Chotiroseranee, president of the Kanchanaburi Conservation Group, blamed a mass exodus of wild elephants into the outside world on human encroachment on their natural habitat in the Salak Phra wildlife sanctuary, which is currently experiencing a serious shortage of water. On average, an adult elephant drinks between 150-200 liters of water and eats some 200 kilograms of food daily. Therefore, in times of drought wild elephants are forced to come out of their natural habitats to search for food and water. This often results in the animals being injured or killed by people whose farms or plantations are raided. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


Category: Default

No force to be used in deep South

Posted by hasekamp on 15 March 2007 at 17:36 PM
Thailand's Prime Minister Surayud Chulanont reiterated on Thursday the government would not attempt to cope with the southern unrest by force. His reiteration came amidst mounting calls for the government to use the military forces to solve the southern violence after the latest insurgent attack on a van in the southern border province of Yala, which killed eight passengers. "I have never compromised with persons who broke the law. I will compromise with those who talk with reason only. The southern unrest must be coped with by political means, not a military force," he said at the 5th "Prime Minister Meets the Press' function at Government House. The premier said he would travel to the violence-plagued region as often as possible. He said the imposition of a curfew in the region depended on the 4th army region commander. On a shortage of police forces by 3,000 to keep peace in the far South, he said, the government was deploying the forces. By the end of March, he added, 20 companies of military rangers would be reinforced in the far South. (Source: Thai News Agency)


Category: Default

Eight massacred in deep South

Posted by hasekamp on 15 March 2007 at 17:33 PM
A savage attack by insurgents on a passenger van in the deep South, in which eight people were executed with shots to the head, sparked angry condemnation across the country yesterday. Demonstrators took to the streets in the provincial capitals of Ayutthaya, Rayong, Chumphon, Krabi, Si Sa Ket and Chiang Rai, with more protests expected today. The displays of outrage came soon after the public learned from news reports of the atrocity, which occurred in Yala's Yaha district. Police said eight passengers were found dead, with gunshot wounds in their heads and chests, inside a bullet-riddled van which had run off the Yaha-Bannang Sata road and hit a tree after it came under a hail of gunfire about 8.20am.
One of the wounded was the van driver, Abdulraman Kodae, 41. The other was an unknown woman in her 30s, who was in a critical condition. Police said the assailants also made off with the passengers' wallets. The rescue team took time reaching the crime scene as they were hindered by felled trees and metal spikes on the road. An intelligence source said the attack occurred in an area infiltrated by the Gerekan Mujahidin Islam Patani group. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


Category: Default

Birthday of His Majesty

Posted by hasekamp on 14 March 2007 at 14:11 PM
A bit early, but time goes fast:
His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej will greet his subjects from a Royal Plaza balcony at 10.30am on December 5 as part of grand celebrations hosted by the government for his 80th birthday. PM's Office deputy permanent secretary Jadul Apichartbutr, who chaired the sub-committee to arrange the public audience ceremony, said yesterday the sub-committee had proposed two venue options - the balcony of the Chakri Mahaprasat Throne Hall and one at the Ananta Samakhom Throne Hall - for His Majesty's consideration, he said. Prior to the public audience, a religious rite would be held at 9am to parade holy water from the Ubosot at Wat Benjamabopit Dusitwanaram to either the Chakri Mahaprasat Throne Hall or the Ananta Samakhom Throne Hall in accordance with His Majesty's wishes. The sub-committee would study problems that arose during Their Majesties the King and Queen's public audience during the occasion of His Majesty's 60th Anniversary Accession to the Throne, so as to improve the December 5 public audience, Jadul said. (Source: The Nation)


Category: Default

No alcohol below 20

Posted by hasekamp on 14 March 2007 at 14:07 PM
The Thai cabinet yesterday approved a draft Alcohol Control Bill which imposes a total ban on liquor advertising, except those which appear in live programs from overseas. The bill, which now goes to the National Legislative Assembly (NLA), also raises the minimum age at which people can buy alcoholic beverages from 18 to 20 years. This might be bad news for young tourists, because they may face harsh sentences if they violate the new law.
It includes a round-the-clock ban on liquor advertising on all media, instead of the current 5am to 10pm. Government spokesman Yongyuth Mayalap said it would apply to all forms of advertising, including the display of names and logos of alcoholic beverages in the media, at theatres, shows and social functions. Public Health Minister Mongkol na Songkhla said the bill specifies sites where alcohol consumption and sales are prohibited, such as religious places, schools, government offices and petrol stations. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


Category: Default

Foreigner insults His Majesty

Posted by hasekamp on 12 March 2007 at 11:49 AM
A Swiss man pleaded guilty Monday to criminal charges of insulting Thailand's king by vandalizing pictures of him, a serious offense in a nation where the monarch is revered. Oliver Jufer, 57, was arrested on December 5 for defacing several of the king's ubiquitous portraits with spray paint during a drunken spree through the northern city of Chiang Mai. He was charged with lese majeste and destruction of public property. If convicted, he faces up to 15 years in prison, according to court officials. "He pleaded guilty, and the court set a date for the verdict on March 29," one court official said. Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej is the world's longest-reigning monarch, and one of the only who is still protected by tough lese majeste charges that prohibit any insult to the royal family. Thai law allows anyone to file a lese majeste complaint with the police, which makes people reluctant to engage in any sort of public conversation about the king or his family. (Source: The Nation)


Category: Default

Trade in rare animals

Posted by hasekamp on 12 March 2007 at 11:45 AM
Wildlife officials confiscated two rare black bears, a civet skin, elephant legs and dismembered barking deer carcasses in a raid on a house in Sangkhla Buri district. The house, belonging to Supakit Supan, 30, is believed to be a gathering place for forest poachers who hunt protected animals for sale along the Thai-Burmese border, said Worachai Maitanachote of the Department of Natural Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation. The poachers usually catch animals in the dry season, when wildlife hunting is most common, he said. The team that raided the house found two living Asiatic black bears, a civet skin, and meat from elephants and barking deer. Asiatic black bears are a favoured target of poachers because the demand for them on the black market is high, department officials said. Environment officials are stepping up efforts to prevent poaching of wild elephants when they go to drink at a pond dug by local officials, who wanted to provide them with a source of water in the dry season. Wildlife group Friends of the Asian Elephants has asked wildlife officials to keep a close watch. This follows a report that the elephants were being hunted by a gang trading in elephant parts. An environment official in Kanchanaburi, Winit Rakchart, said he did not believe the gang existed although he would take reports of poaching seriously to see if any illegal activities taking place involved state officials. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


Category: Default

Hat Yai tourism drops

Posted by hasekamp on 11 March 2007 at 14:41 PM
Six Hat Yai tourism associations are pinning their hopes on the government to help turn around the tourism industry, now going through its worst slump in three years since the flare-up of the violent insurgency in the southern region. The demands includes a 50% cut in local taxes, suspension of the FT charge on electricity bills, scrapping underground water fees, making low-interest loans available, intensive tourism promotion campaigns, better security measures, and state contribution to the Social Security Fund on behalf of employers. Chit Banluesilp, president of the Songkhla Chamber of Commerce, said the local group resolved to push for government assistance as it was now beyond their means to help ailing businesses from going under. The government seemed to concentrate its efforts more on the three border provinces of Pattani, Yala and Narathiwat, while leaving Hat Yai out in the cold. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


Category: Default

Gold robber shot by police

Posted by hasekamp on 9 March 2007 at 11:48 AM
A gunman robbed a gold shop in the Chiang Mai muang district, but was shot by police officers during his escape attempt. Chiang Mai police report that Mr. Supat Lhuengpechngam entered the Yaowaraj Gold shop in the Padung market of the Chiang Mai muang district and brandished a fake pistol in an attempt to rob the gold shop's owner, Mr. Narin Meeratanakarn. Mr. Narin produced a real firearm in an effort to prevent the robbery but was overpowered and had the weapon stolen from him. Police revealed that Mr. Narin and his wife were shot in the process. A traffic officer in the vicinity responded to the incident and opened fire on Mr. Supat, killing him as he tried to flee the scene. The gold shop owner received slight injuries but his wife was fatally wounded and passed away at a local hospital shortly after the incident. A street vendor was also injured in the exchange of gunfire between Mr. Supat and the traffic officer. (Source: Public Relations Department)


Category: Default

Forest fire alert

Posted by hasekamp on 9 March 2007 at 11:45 AM
A large-scale forest fire raging out of control for three days is carrying dust, dirt and darkness from Myanmar to wide areas along the Thai-Myanmar border and Thai authorities are preparing for a possible spread of the conflagration across the mountainous frontier. Seen from the Thai side, heavy smoke has been filling the skies of Mae Sai, Mae Fa Luang, Chiang Saen and Mae Chan districts for three days and ash has been deposited across a wide landscape. As a result, many local residents at Thai-Myanmar border are suffering from eye irritation and fear of respiratory ailments from dirt, dust and possible toxic pollutants. The fire broke out in a forest in Myanmar territory on the opposite of Huay Nam Rin village, Viangphangkham sub-district, Mae Sai district and spread to an area of about 200 rai or 320,000 square meters. The severe fire has been raging through bamboo forest and dry deciduous forest leaves, which are tinder-dry before the onset on the rainy season, according to forestry observers. Many soldiers have been assigned to dig fire blocking trenches and to prepare for other possible fire-fighting duties. It has been speculated that the ongoing forest fire may have been caused by villagers who may have negligently lighted a fire during land clearing and preparation for the new planting season, or irresponsibly burning forest tracks to drive wildlife out of the forest for hunting purposes. (Source: Thai News Agency)


Category: Default

Extra-judicial killings

Posted by hasekamp on 7 March 2007 at 16:06 PM
The US government's latest human rights report has criticised Thailand for its excessive use of force against criminals, committing extrajudicial killings and the culture of "impunity". The report released on Tuesday is a systematic analysis of human rights conditions in Thailand last year. It covers the whole gamut of issues related to human rights during the last nine months of deposed prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra and the remaining three months following the coup. This report was more like a followup to what happened in the years before, especially in key areas that relate to human rights violations in southern Thailand, disappearances and press freedom. Nonetheless, it has specifically mentioned the Emergency Decree that gives the power and immunity to security forces from prosecution. One of the darkest spots for Thailand, as pointed out in the report, is the Thai police engaging in torture and beating and abusing detainees and prisoners with impunity. That helps to explain why one of the top priorities of the interim government has been police reform.
"The government has constantly tried to improve the human rights condition in the country. We also adhere to the nonuse of force in the southern provinces," said a senior government official. (Source: The Nation)


Category: Default

iTV continues after all

Posted by hasekamp on 7 March 2007 at 11:49 AM
Prime Minister Surayud Chulanont ordered on Wednesday for iTV to continue broadcast their programme after midnight of Wednesday. The iTV was initially scheduled to go off their broadcast after midnight of Wednesday after Council of State ruled that Public Relations Department could run the station after its contract with PM's Office was terminated on Tuesday. Chulayuth quoted Surayud as saying that there would not be shutting down of the iTV programs. The Public Relations Department (PRD) vows not to interfere in editorial independence and programming of iTV after it steps in to manage the beleaguered station. The station has to come under the PM's Office, which oversees the PRD, following the station's failure to pay more than Bt100billion in concession fees and fines. (Source: The Nation)


Category: Default

Extinct bird found

Posted by hasekamp on 7 March 2007 at 11:46 AM
A bird presumed to have been extinct for well over 100 years has been rediscovered in a pristine coastal wetland in Petchaburi, on the Gulf of Thailand. The large-billed reed warbler (Acrocephalus orinus) had not been seen since 1867, when a single bird of the species was reported in the northwest of India, a prominent ornithologist said yesterday. Philip Round, a lecturer from Mahidol University's department of biology, said his team spotted and trapped the bird on March 27 last year at the royally-initiated Laem Phak Bia Environment Research and Development Project in Petchaburi province. It took about a year to confirm that the bird was the large-billed reed warbler. "We collected two feathers from the bird for DNA tests and the result showed that it perfectly matched the DNA of the 139-year-old specimen kept at the British Museum," said Mr Round. The large-billed reed warbler was found nesting in grass filter beds used for sewage treatment. The bird is small, brown and mostly unmarked. It weighs 9.5 grammes, and is 18 centimeters in length. The bird was released unharmed after the ornithological team finished the examination. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


Category: Default

Honoring the heroines of Phuket

Posted by hasekamp on 7 March 2007 at 10:46 AM
This year's festival honoring the heroine sisters of Thao Thepkrasattri and Thao Sri Soontorn will include traditional dances, games and a mountain bike race during the three-day celebration. The festival, a commemoration of Phuket's victory over the Burmese incursion of 1785, will be held at Baan Riang in Thalang, near the heroines monument from March 11 to 13. The highlight of the festival will be a light and sound performance, which will feature an estimated 800 performers and students. The light and sound performance will be performed each night of the festival at 8:30 pm. Other highlights include cultural performances such as the Manora (classical Thai music and dance) and Nang Talung (shadow theater). (Source: The Phuket Gazette)


Category: Default

iTV off the air today

Posted by hasekamp on 6 March 2007 at 10:54 AM
Prime Minister Surayud Chulanont apologised Tuesday to iTV staffs, saying that the station's operation has to be suspended on Tuesday night, pending the Council of State's decision.
Surayud said earlier that iTV station could be operated and iTV staffs would be able to continue working after the concession is revoked on Tuesday. "I am sorry for saying that the station would be able to broadcast after March 6 that the concession is terminated. The station's operation has to be suspended pending decision of the Council of State," he said. The Council of State will consider whether the PM's Office, as a government authority, can take over iTV from a private company. (Source: The Nation)


Category: Default

Sonthi goes into hiding

Posted by hasekamp on 5 March 2007 at 16:43 PM
Army chief and chairman of the Council for National Security (CNS) Sonthi Boonyaratkalin has moved to a new residence deep in the compound of the 11th Infantry Regiment in Bang Khen due to fears for his safety, a military source said yesterday. According to the source, everyone was aware that Gen Sonthi, who led the Sept 19 coup d'etat that toppled the Thaksin Shinawatra government, was living in a house next to Kesakomol road. The old location was a threat to his safety as it could be an easy target for a gun or gun or grenade attack, the source said. Gen Sonthi was aware that reporters could easily monitor his movements at the former house which triggered concerns about the residence's security levels. The concerns prompted the army chief to order renovation of the house deep in the 11th Infantry Regiment, the source said. The house was the official residence of a former army chief-of-staff. The old residence functions more as a reception house as it is near Army Headquarters on Ratchadamnoen avenue. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


Category: Default

Campaign against constitution

Posted by hasekamp on 4 March 2007 at 11:47 AM
People should reject the military-engineered constitution in a coming referendum, pro-democracy activists, because it is a legacy of the coup d'etat and could lead to an extension of military power in the country. Around 10 campaigners marched from the Siam Centre shopping mall to the Onnuj skytrain station yesterday, calling on the public not to accept what they said was an undemocratic constitution. The new charter is scheduled to be put to a national referendum in September. It has not yet been written but its broad outlines are already known. The activity was the first in a series of events against the new charter planned by the "Thai Say NO" campaign. It came as drafters prepared to gather in Cha-am district of Phetchaburi tomorrow to begin writing the new constitution. Campaign leader Sombat Boonngamanong of the new Pro-democracy Citizen Group said the charter drafting process was undemocratic due to the lack of public participation. "The coup makers tore down the most democratic 1997 constitution and selected a group of people to draft a new version. So how can we accept this military-sponsored charter?" asked Mr Sombat. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


Category: Default

More military power

Posted by hasekamp on 2 March 2007 at 11:12 AM
The Council for National Security yesterday unveiled plans to appoint military officers as deputy governors for security affairs in all 76 provincial administrations across the country, an army source said. The CNS was also working to double the tenure of village heads from five to 10 years, the source added.
Both were seen as efforts to ensure military power in the provinces and shore up the clout of the Sept 19 coup leaders. Vithoon Chartpatimapong, chairman of Nakhon Ratchasima provincial administrative organisation, said the plan to appoint security deputy governors was unnecessary and would be a financial burden.
Wittaya Kaewparadai, deputy secretary-general of the Democrat party, said the move was probably aimed at pushing officials out of "neutral gear".
The source said CNS chairman Sonthi Boonyaratkalin spoke of the plans during a private meeting with 40 tambon and village heads yesterday.
The CNS chief wanted to give more power to tambon and village chiefs so they could assist the Isoc more, said the source. Gen Sonthi first floated the idea of doubling the terms of tambon and village heads late last year as a move that would bridge the gap between local people and state authorities. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


Category: Default

Studying nuclear energy

Posted by hasekamp on 2 March 2007 at 11:03 AM
The National Energy Policy Council has resolved to form a committee to conduct the feasibility study of a nuclear power plant construction in Thailand. Korb Krittayakeeron, senior advisor of the National Science and Technology Development Agency (NSTDA), will chair the committee, said Energy Minister Piyasvasti Amaranand. The committee will study if it is viable to construct a nucler power plant in Thailand and prepares all legal measures to accommodate the construction. Piyasvasti said it should take 7 years to study and prepare for the construction while it takes another 6 years for construction. (Source: The Nation)


Category: Default

Results of the search for    [which took seconds]

  • Total Matches: Documents
  • Total Pages:
  • Current Page #:
  • Matches on This Page: -
  •