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Thai economy first minus and then plus 3 %?

Posted by hasekamp on 31 October 2009 at 15:11 PM
The Thai economy is expected to shrink 3 per cent for this year, but is poised to turn around and grow 3 per cent next year, according to a top banker. Kosit Panpiumrat, executive chairman of Bangkok Bank Plc, Thailand’#39;s largest bank, said that BBL’#39;s lending this year might contract and miss its growth target of 3-5 per cent set earlier because its clients had repaid their debts in a large amount. Loans extended by the bank in the first none months of this year shrank 5-6 per cent. More loans are expected to be provided in the remaining portion of this year, which would help make the number of loans extended by the bank stay at the same level as those at the end of last year. He predicted that the economy will manage to turn around and expand by 3 per cent next year, propelled by the government’#39;s policy to run its budget deficit up to 7 per cent of the gross domestic product (GDP) to stimulate the economy. (Source: Thai News Agency)


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Tourism slightly improved

Posted by hasekamp on 30 October 2009 at 13:35 PM
Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva said Friday that the tourism industry situation has improved with more foreign tourists visiting Thailand. For example, in September the number of foreign tourists was about 200,000 higher than the same month last year, Abhisit said. He said the Tourism and Sports Ministry expected a total of 14 million foreign tourists would visit Thailand this year. "I affirm that the number of foreign tourists has increased a lot," the prime minister told reporters after the monthly meeting of permanent secretaries. (Source: The Nation)


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Princess: King goes home soon

Posted by hasekamp on 30 October 2009 at 13:31 PM
His Majesty the King's condition has greatly improved, and it is expected that His Majesty will be able to return to the palace soon, Her Royal Highness Princess Chulabhorn said on Friday. "I wanted to tell everyone that HM the King's condition has significantly improved. I think he will regain his strength and return to the palace soon," the princess told an audience in Bangkok. "His Majesty has no fever and is continuing to get physical therapy," she said. "He can stand up and walk with a walker. He practices walking every day." This is the third time that the princess has spoken publicly about His Majesty's health since he was admitted to Siriraj Hospital for treatment for inflammation of the lungs on Sept 19.
Unsourced rumours about His Majesty's health caused the Stock Exchange of Thailand index to fall over 7% on Oct 14 and 15. Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva said on Thursday that he has ordered police to continue an investigation into four people suspected of spreading the rumours, but he did not reveal details of the four suspects. Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban admitted on Friday that the law in this area is rather complex so it would not be easy to take action against those who circulated the rumours. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


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China to invest in Thai railways?

Posted by hasekamp on 27 October 2009 at 10:05 AM
Thailand will invite China to invest in the Thai railway system as part of the cooperation between the two countries, according to a statement from Government House. Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva discussed the matter during his meeting on Sunday with his Chinese counterpart Wen Jiabao at the Hilton Hua Hin Resort and Spa in Prachuab Khirikhan on the sidelines of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) summit, its related meetings and the 4th East Asia Summit. Thailand is China’#39;s third largest trading partner in ASEAN, and both countries can apply bilateral trade via the established bilateral trade committee. Regarding cooperation on railways and energy, China has a positive position in providing financial support. China also sees the necessity of enhancing agricultural trade, and in promoting tourism. On the occasion of the 35th anniversary of Thailand-China relations, the Chinese government is pleased to strengthen strategic cooperation with Thailand, according to the statement. (Source: Thai News Agency)


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Deputy PM explains Thaksin case

Posted by hasekamp on 27 October 2009 at 10:03 AM
Thailand's Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban said on Tuesday that he had clearly explained the correct information regarding the case of former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, ousted in a September 2006 coup, to Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen. Mr Suthep said he had met and discussed the matter with Mr Hun Sen, as assigned by Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva, and the Cambodian premier now has a better understanding about Mr Thaksin’#39;s case. Mr Suthep said he told the Cambodian premier that it was too late for Mr Thaksin to complain that he has been treated unfairly as the coup was over long before he and his supporters accepted the post-coup Constitution and fielded candidates to run in the (2007) general election which led to the pro-Thaksin party's victory, but then two prime ministers were forced to leave office after being found guilty of violating the constitution. "Mr Hun Sen understands what I said," said Mr Suthep “quot;However I didn't mention the extradition and his home offer to Mr Thaksin, I went there only to give him better and correct understanding on the situation in Thailand." The deputy premier said he had told the Cambodian leader that the Thai people want to live in peace with their neighbours, respecting the sovereignty of each other and not meddling in its neighbour's internal affairs and solve any dispute through peaceful means. Mr Hun Sen also pledged that the recent verbal spat would not lead to border tension or military skirmishes, according to the Thai deputy prime minister. (Source: Thai News Agency)


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King may go home soon

Posted by hasekamp on 27 October 2009 at 9:59 AM
Her Royal Highness Princess Chulabhorn says His Majesty the King will be discharged from hospital soon. "His Majesty can now rise from the bed by himself and can stand with the aid of a walker," Princess Chulabhorn told an audience of Thai people in Italy yesterday. "I think His Majesty will leave hospital soon." The Princess's remarks were televised on the Television Pool of Thailand. She said it would take a while for the King to be able to walk. His Majesty is now receiving physical therapy at Siriraj Hospital. "His Majesty is very resolute and determined to undergo physical therapy regularly, many times a day," the Princess said. She said Her Majesty the Queen was constantly at the King's bedside and HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn also spent her nights at the hospital. "We're trying to find ways to make His Majesty laugh by telling him jokes, bringing comedy movies for him to watch and playing music for him. We're trying to keep His Majesty entertained." (Source: The Bangkok Post)


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His Majesty's public appearance

Posted by hasekamp on 24 October 2009 at 19:42 PM
His Majesty the King has appeared in public for the first time after spending more than a month in hospital being treated for inflammation of his lungs. Hundreds of well-wishers crowding Siriraj Hospital's compound to check for news updates were given a welcome surprise when they saw the King come down from his hospital ward on the 16th floor yesterday afternoon. Sitting on a padded electric wheelchair, His Majesty was accompanied by doctors, nurses and security officers. "Long Live the King," cheered the people as the King travelled past lines of well-wishers to pay homage to the statue of King Rama V, his grandfather. Yesterday was Chulalongkorn Memorial Day. The nation commemorated the day when King Chulalongkorn (Rama V) passed away 99 years ago. Well-wishers, when seeing His Majesty, kneeled to pay their respects. Many were tearful while others yelled out loudly to wish the King a long life. The King's unannounced public appearance helped ease the concerns among many people about his health. "My worries have now disappeared after living with rumours for weeks," said Prapai Bunsawan, 79. Like other people who signed a visitors' book for the King, Ms Prapai urged politicians to stop arguing. Good deeds and a peaceful society would keep the King happy, she said.
His Majesty, who wore a blue shirt, was looking cheerful yesterday. He talked with doctors occasionally as cardiologist Pradit Panjawinin wheeled him round. The King also went to pay homage to a statue of Prince Mahidol of Songkhla, his father, and a portrait of Her Royal Highness Princess Srinagarindra Boromrajajonani, his mother.He also saw the exhibition of his late mother, held to celebrate the 109th anniversary of her birth on Oct 21, before moving on for a sightseeing tour around many areas of the hospital compound. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


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Abhisit responds to Hun Sen

Posted by hasekamp on 24 October 2009 at 12:03 PM
Thailand's Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva on Friday said that Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen may have received incorrect information about former Thai prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, and should not allow himself to be used as a 'pawn'. The Thai premier commented after Mr Hun Sen asserted that Mr Thaksin could remain in Cambodia as his guest and could be his economic advisor, saying he was not interfering in Thailand's internal affairs but that Cambodia has the right to exercise its sovereignty and make such a decision.
Mr Hun Sen offered his comment as he set foot on Thai soil Friday evening to attend the 15th Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit which opened Friday morning in the Thai seaside resort towns of Cha-am and Hua Hin. In response to questions regarding his government's statement that Cambodia would reject any Thai request to extradite Mr Thaksin if he accepts an invitation for refuge in Cambodia, Mr Hun Sen told reporters to read the extradition treaty thoroughly to understand why the former Thai premier, whom he described as his friend, can stay in Cambodia as a guest of the Cambodian government. (Source: Thai News Agency)


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King seen in public

Posted by hasekamp on 23 October 2009 at 19:56 PM
His Majesty the King's condition is stable, according to the latest statement from the Royal Household Bureau. "His physical strength has increased. His sleep and food intake is normal," the Royal Household Bureau announced yesterday. It added that doctors would continue to give antibiotics to His Majesty until the prescription schedule was completed. "Food supplement shall also be given in line with nutritional principles," the Royal Household Bureau said. On Friday His Majesty has also been seen in public. (Source: The Nation)


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Four leaders will be late for ASEAN

Posted by hasekamp on 22 October 2009 at 16:01 PM
Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen, Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak and Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo will be absent. The opening ceremony would be held at 9.45am on Friday. Hun Sen would arrive in Hua Hin on Friday at 4pm. as he would be busy with the official visit of South Korean president Lee Myung-bak. The president was former economic adviser of Hun Sen. Asean chief Surin Pitsuwan confirmed that Hun Sen's absence from the opening ceremony was because his busy schedule with the South Korean President. Indonesia's President Yudhoyono has to attend the inauguration for the second term of his presidency and would arrive in Thailand 8.30pm Friday. Malaysia's Prime Minister Najib would attend parliament debate on budget before departing for the summit and would arrive in Thailand around the same time as Filipino President Arroyo at about 9pm. It is very rare for the Asean to have a number of leaders absentia at the opening ceremony. (Source: The Nation)


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Thaksin in Cambodia?

Posted by hasekamp on 22 October 2009 at 15:54 PM
Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva rebuked neighbouring Cambodia's premier Hun Sen on Thursday for his offer to let fugitive former Thai leader Thaksin Shinawatra stay there "any time". Mr Abhisit told reporters that his Cambodian counterpart should keep friendship and politics separate. "I have talked with Hun Sen several times and he's told me that he's Thaksin's friend, but that he will separate friendship from duty and international affairs," said Mr Abhisit. "I have told Hun Sen that anyone appointed to an important position must separate out their personal relations," he said. "Once Thaksin enters Cambodia the extradition process will begin. "If Cambodia fails to comply with the treaty, that would be another story," he said, adding that he hoped to meet Hun Sen at the weekend. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


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Vegetarian Festival 2009

Posted by hasekamp on 19 October 2009 at 19:17 PM
Half a million people are expected to attend this year’#39;s Phuket Vegetarian Festival, bringing in around 33 million baht, a senior tourism official said. Wanaphapar Suksombul, Assistant Director of the Tourism Authority of Thailand's Phuket Office, said 80 percent of Phuket City’#39;s hotel rooms have been booked up during the event, which officially started at midnight on Saturday. Ms Wanaphapar said a large number of Chinese tourists were expected to attend. Two charter flights carrying 500 tourists from China had already arrived on the island, and 10 more flights from Beijing, Kunming and Shanghai were expected to land in the next few days, she said. Meanwhile, infected wounds and food sanitation are the two biggest worries of the Phuket Public Health Office during the festival, PPHO Deputy Director Wiwat Seetamanotch says. Dr Wiwat said any mah song intending to pierce his face with sharp objects should first clean the area thoroughly with alcohol. The mah song, are the 'mediums' the gods enter during the festival. He also warned against using objects that were too big or that had rough surfaces, and asked anyone helping mah song with their piercings to wear gloves. (Source: The Phuket Gazette)


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His Majesty is well

Posted by hasekamp on 19 October 2009 at 19:13 PM
His Majesty the King's general health is good, and his fever is gone, the Royal Household Bureau said yesterday. "His Majesty can eat and sleep well," the Palace said in its latest statement. The King has been receiving treatment at Siriraj Hospital since September 19. (Source: The Nation)


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New Politics against any charter change

Posted by hasekamp on 18 October 2009 at 14:37 PM
The New Politics Party (PAD) is opposed to any attempt to amend the 2007 constitution, said party acting spokesman Samran Rodphet on Sunday. Mr Samran said the proposed amendment of the constitution on six points would not heal rifts in society or bring about reconciliation. The constitutional amendment was only a political game between political parties or groups to be in an advantageous position over one another without thinking about the people's interests or political reform, he said. "So, the New Politics Party would like to call for all to abandon the idea to amend the constitution and pay more interest in creating reconciliation," he added. Suriyasai Katasila, acting secretary-general of New Politics, said the party and the People's Alliance for Democracy would oppose constitutional amendment in every way. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


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Extra security during ASEAN summit

Posted by hasekamp on 18 October 2009 at 14:34 PM
Although the government has imposed the Internal Security Act (ISA) in two Thai provinces where an Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) summit will be held later this week, the number of security personnel assigned to the event may be increased further as anti-government protesters now plan to submit letters to ASEAN leaders, Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva said on Sunday. Mr. Abhisit said leaders of the anti-government United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD) could summit complaint letters anywhere and not necessarily during the summit and that he hoped everybody must have learned a bitter lesson from the abrupt cancellation of ASEAN summit in Pattaya resort in April this year. Every sector should now join hands in making the country advanced further, Mr. Abhisit said, adding that his government has activated the ISA in both provinces and the number of security personnel may be further boosted because some people “quot;still want to create chaos”quot; in the country. In an attempt to ensure that this week’#39;s ASEAN summit would proceed smoothly, the government imposed ISA in Prachuap Khiri Khan’#39;s Hua Hin and Petchaburi’#39;s Cha-am from October 12 to 25. The summit will be held in the two resorts October 23-25. (Source: Thai News Agency)


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Phuket air hub

Posted by hasekamp on 16 October 2009 at 14:59 PM
Thai AirAsia has geared up for the establishment of Phuket as a new regional air hub next month with its “quot;AirAsia Loves Phuket Fair”quot;, which ends at Jungceylon today. Thai AirAsia CEO Tassapon Bijileveld visited the fair yesterday, presenting a model AirAsia aircraft to Phuket Governor Wichai Phraisa-ngop as part of the festivities. November 15 has been designated as the official launch of the ‘Phuket air hub’#39; project, which is hoped will lift the annual number of tourists to Phuket above the six-million mark for the first time. “quot;In addition to our daily flights to Singapore, Thai AirAsia’#39;s Phuket hub will operate direct flights to Hong Kong, Jakarta and many other destinations soon,”quot; Mr Tassapon said. There has also been a strong response to the low-cost carrier’#39;s launch of direct flights on its newly-announced Phuket-Hong Kong route, Mr Tassapon said. AirAsia offered passengers booking online 20,000 deeply discounted seats on the route starting on October 5. (Source: The Phuket Gazette)


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PM: Don't trust stock market rumours

Posted by hasekamp on 16 October 2009 at 14:52 PM
Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva has instructed the investigation into the rumours on His Majesty the King's health condition which plunged the stock exchange in the past two days, while urging investors not to be swayed by rumours. He said on Friday that there would be investigation if the rumours violated the securities and exchange law. He said the investigation result would show if the rumours were floated on political purposes. The Stock Exchange of Thailand Index on Friday recovered the loss, ending 24.40 points higher or 3.52 per cent to 717.12 points on turn over of Bt29.77 billion. On Wednesday, the SET fell 2.04 per cent and on Thursday it was down 5.3 per cent as a result of massive sell orders from foreign investors on a panic fuelled by rumours about the declining health of Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej, 81, who has been in hospital since September 19. (Source: The Nation)


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Naationwide floods

Posted by hasekamp on 12 October 2009 at 16:07 PM
Floods are continuing in varied areas of Thailand, with critical needs in some areas due to more overflowing torrents, while the national weather service warned that the weather system from China now covers the North and Northeast. In the northeastern province of Si Sa Ket, second round of flash flooding has hit Si Sa Ket municipality. Inundation in some areas is over two metres deep due to the overflowing waters of the Mun River causing residents to move their valuables to higher ground. In Phitsanulok’#39;s provincial seat and Bang Rakam district over 30,000 rais (about 12,000 acres) of flooded paddy fields meant that farmers were unable to harvest their crops in time, meaning that they have lost most of their annual income. The farmlands now smell of rotten rice. In nearby Kamphaeng Phet province, incessant rain and the accumulated run-off from several other northern provinces quickly raised water levels in the Yom River, triggering flash run-offs overflowing into many houses as well as agricultural areas. Meanwhile, floodwaters in Sam Ngam district of Phichit is more than two metres high. In Kanchanaburi province west of Bangkok, officials in Sai Yok, Thong Pha Phum and Sangkhla Buri districts warned motorists and drivers to drive carefully due to poor visibility from a dense fog covering the areas. Meanwhile, the Meteorological Department warned that the ridge of a moderate high pressure weather system from China now covering the Northeast and the North of Thailand is causing thundershowers temperature drops one 1-3 degrees Celsius. (Source: Thai News Agency)


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Climate talks fail

Posted by hasekamp on 10 October 2009 at 15:46 PM
The UN climate change talks in Bangkok have ended in failure to reach an agreement. "Little progress was made on the issue of midterm emissions reduction targets for industrialised countries. And clarity is lacking on the issues of finance and developing countries undertaking additional actions to limit their emissions growth and adapt to the inevitable effects of climate change," said Yvo de Boer, executive secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). He made the comments yesterday, the last day of a two week UN conference in which 4,000 people from around the world, including delegates from state agencies and non-governmental organisations, attempted to hammer out a mechanism for addressing the adverse effects of climate change. The negotiations in Thailand will be followed by five days of talks in Barcelona, Spain from November 26 before the UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen from December 718. However, de Boer said he had seen progress by all parties on the issues of adaptation, technology transfer and capacity building. There was also agreement on technical issues, such as forests and land use, how to assess the global warming potential of new greenhouse gases and a number of options for strengthening the Kyoto Protocol. "Ultimately, what we need to see is something that builds on the Kyoto Protocol, making it much stronger and more significant," he said. Negotiators will spend three weeks back at home to receive guidance from their political leaders to complete their work. (Source: The Nation)


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Ayutthaya Temples safe this year

Posted by hasekamp on 9 October 2009 at 10:28 AM
Culture Minister Teera Slukpetch has given an assurance historical ruins and ancient temples in Ayutthaya will be safe from this year's flooding. Mr Teera yesterday said the historical sites located in or near the water-locked Koh Muang in central Ayutthaya were not under threat even though riverside communities in nine districts of the province had recently been declared flood disaster zones with more than 7,300 households affected. The minister was speaking after inspecting flood prevention measures at Wat Chai Wattanaram in tambon Ban Pom of Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya district. Wat Chai Wattanaram is a landmark temple located on the west bank of the Chao Phraya River. A 400m-long dyke has been built along the river by the Fine Arts Department to protect the temple from floods. More than 20 temples and historical sites in the province were heavily damaged by floods and runoff from the North in 2006. The construction of the flood wall at a cost of 50 million baht was completed about two months ago. Mr Teera said flooding had submerged a limited area at Pom Petch Fort, another historical site, but the damage was minimal. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


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Airport train in trial

Posted by hasekamp on 8 October 2009 at 11:32 AM
An overseas company will operate the express rail link to Suvarnabhumi Airport for the first few years of its operation, the State Railway of Thailand says. The SRT union has opposed a plan to set up a subsidiary to operate the service, so an overseas contractor would be hired instead, SRT governor Yuthana Thapcharoen said yesterday. DB International GmbH, which is installing the operating system for the railway link and training staff, would be hired to run the service as well, he said. The link is scheduled to open in April. Mr Yuthana said the SRT would need over 500 million baht from the government as a start-up fund to run the Airport Rail Link. The sum will cover management costs, insurance for trains and passengers, and the cost of running the railway stations. The governor was among passengers who went on an unofficial trial run of the rail link yesterday. The SRT handed out free tickets to the public. Further trial runs will be held on Oct 14, 21 and 28 and Nov 4. Daily trial runs will be held from Dec 5 to April. Mr Yuthana said passengers on the test run from Makkasan station to the airport gave the service a thumbs up. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


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Ayutthaya flooding disaster

Posted by hasekamp on 7 October 2009 at 11:52 AM
The districts of Phak Hai, Sena and Bang Ban have been declared flood disaster zones in Ayutthaya. They have been the hardest hit of seven districts which reported widespread flooding in the Central province. Declaring the areas disaster zones will allow the provincial office to immediately disburse flood relief funds. Meanwhile, the Irrigation Department has assured residents of Bangkok that flooding this year would not be as bad as three years ago. Ayutthaya governor Witthaya Phiewphong said the overflowing Chao Phraya, Noi and Lop Buri rivers were to blame for the serious flooding in his province. Many communities were now under 30cm to 70cm of water, he said. Deputy Agriculture Minister Theera Wongsamut said flood damage was being assessed so relief funds could be allocated to affected areas. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


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PAD threatens to take the streets again

Posted by hasekamp on 7 October 2009 at 11:47 AM
The core leaders of the People's Alliance for Democracy have threatened to resume street protest by the yellow shirts if the government proceeds to amend the charter. The leaders, including Sondhi Limthongkul, Somsak Kosaisuk, Somkiart Pongpaibul, reminded the crowds on Wednesday that they had held street protests totalling 226 days to oppose charter rewrite under two puppet governments. "We rallied two times for 33 days and 193 days totalling 226 days to oppose charter amendments and oust two puppet governments and now the present government has the idea of amending the charter," Chamlong said. Responding to Somsak's question on reviving street protests, the crowds gave a long cheer in support of taking to the streets once again. None made any noise when asked if they disagreed with the protest plan. The threat for the resumption of street protests was made at a Royal Plaza rally to mark the last's year bloodshed caused by the October 7 crackdown on yellow-shirt protesters. (Source: The Nation)


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PAD core leader goes politics

Posted by hasekamp on 6 October 2009 at 12:43 PM
Sondhi Limthongkul, a core leader of the People’#39;s Alliance for Democracy (PAD), was elected the leader of the New Politics Party of the yellow-shirt movement, a party source said on Tuesday afternoon. The party held its first assembly at Muang Thong Thani in Bangkok this morning to officially elect a new leader. Members proposed Gen Saprang Kalayanamitr, former assistant chairman of the now defunct Council for National Security, Gen Pathompong Kesornsuk, former army savant, and Maj Gen Chamlong Srimuang, another PAD leader, for the post of party leader. They were disqualified because they were not party members, the source said. Several members then nominated Somsak Kosaisuk, the interim party leader of New Politics since it was registered, and Suriyasai Katasila, party secretary-general, but both candidates withdrew from the contest. Finally, only Mr Sondhi was nominated for the leadership of the newly established political party. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


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Huge extra amount for infrastructure

Posted by hasekamp on 5 October 2009 at 14:49 PM
The Cabinet will consider allocating an added Bt50 billion to finance the government’#39;s infrastructure development plan when it meets next week. Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva said the Cabinet will consider a budget increase from Bt100 billion to Bt150 billion for the “quot;Thai Khem Khaeng”quot; or Strong Thai project to improve the country’#39;s infrastructure and stimulate the economy. The spending of the additional budget will focus on the agricultural, industrial and service sectors to strengthen competitiveness of the private sector, said Mr Abhisit. He said the government wanted to add value for agricultural production, to help farmers have land ownership and to support water supply and researches on plant species. For the industrial sector, the government will develop creative and technical knowledge to reduce the amount of raw materials used in production but add product value by designing and through converting assets into capital. (Source: Thai News Agency)


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Train accident, seven dead

Posted by hasekamp on 5 October 2009 at 14:45 PM
A train bound for Bangkok from Trang derailed near Hua Hin early Monday morning, killing seven passengers, according to th State Railway of Thailand, including a 2-year-old girl, and injuring many others. In a statement released late this afternoon, the SRT said the accident killed seven people, all female, and injured about 70 others. The dead victims -- all Thais -- were Kanokluck Thaboonrueng, 2; Orapin Jaijit, 42; Naruman Nayasontarakul, 50; Wimol Somjing, 43; Kalayakorn Somjing, 41; Bowornrat Teeveevej, 30 and Sanruethai Nim, 39. The figures released by the SRT conflicted with earlier reports, quoting officials, that as many as 10 people were killed and up to 88 people were injured. Four foreigners suffered minor injuries, he said. Their nationalities were not immediately known. The cause of the accident was still unknown but it could be due to damaged tracks, State Railway of Thailand (SRT) officials said. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


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Another good bulletin about His Majesty

Posted by hasekamp on 3 October 2009 at 22:54 PM
His Majesty the King's general condition is good and his appetite has improved, according to the latest report from the Royal Household Bureau yesterday. In its 14th statement on the King's health, the bureau said the Siriraj Hospital medical team had stopped giving intravenous fluid to the 81-year-old monarch. Large numbers of Thais continued to visit the hospital to sign the guest books provided by the bureau, expressing their affection and get-well wishes to the King. Officials from His Majesty the King's Personal Affairs Division also brought a 16mm film-producing camera to record the event for the Royal Private Film Archive. (Source: The Nation)


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Tourist police hands out bookmarks

Posted by hasekamp on 2 October 2009 at 23:00 PM
Foreign tourists arriving at Phuket International Airport (PIA) are being introduced to their ‘first friend' on the island, the Tourist Police, with the distribution of bookmarks displaying important telephone numbers, including a new Tourist Police hotline. The nationwide public relations campaign, titled ‘Your First Friend', was launched by the Tourist Police last month with the aim of putting a friendly face on the Tourist Police and to encourage tourists to contact them if they encounter any problems. The Tourist Police hotline number 1155 is prominently displayed on the bright red bookmarks handed out at the airport immigration counters. Other important numbers on the bookmarks include emergency services, a TAT hotline, hospitals, airports, the State Railway of Thailand and taxi services. (Source: The Phuket Gazette)


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Household: King's health good

Posted by hasekamp on 2 October 2009 at 22:53 PM
HM the King Bhumibol Adulyadej's health condition is now good, according to the latest statement from the Royal Household Bureau.
"He can take more food and get good sleep," the statement said. His doctors have still provided His Majesty with physical therapy. However, they have already reduced the amount of food supplement given to him intravenously. The much beloved monarch has been receiving treatment at the Siriraj Hospital since September 19. (Source: The Nation)


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