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Zika warning!

Posted by hasekamp on 28 June 2016 at 12:19 PM
The Zika virus has infected 97 people in 10 provinces this year, with the disease still active in two provinces, Beung Kan and Phetchabun. Disease Control Department director-general Dr Amnuay Gajeena assured people that the spread of Zika is still under control in Thailand. "It's far different from the Zika situation in South America," he said, but he warned people to avoid mosquito bites, which transmit the disease. While the Zika virus usually causes a mild fever, skin rash, conjunctivitis, muscle and joint pain, malaise, or a headache, it can be fatal in severe cases. Recent scientific evidence has also linked the Zika virus to microcephaly and Guillain-Barre syndrome. (Source: The Nation)


Category: Default

No more street vending around Siam Square

Posted by hasekamp on 28 June 2016 at 12:16 PM
City Hall has set an Aug 1 deadline for all street vendors outside designated areas in Siam Square and Ratchadamri areas to move to new areas that have been set aside for them. Witchapong Suwannamai, assistant director of the Pathumwan district office, said the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) had decided to end all night-time street vending outside designated commercial areas near Siam Square. The city administration had prepared a new site beneath Phong Phra Ram expressway for all 554 vendors who would be affected. They had until Aug 1 to relocate their stalls. The new site, covering 7 rai and 46 square wah, could accommodate 620 vendors and 60 vehicles. The land is owned by the Expressway Authority of Thailand, Mr Witchapong said. Currently, the BMA uses the area as a sports yard, a public park and a parking area for its garbage trucks. The site's land use would be changed to accommodate vendors affected by the BMA’s decision to reclaim footpaths around Siam Square for pedestrians, he said during a meeting of BMA executive of Monday. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


Category: Default

Three main political parties against draft charter

Posted by hasekamp on 28 June 2016 at 12:10 PM
The three main political parties are united in their criticism of the charter draft, saying it seeks to place excessive control over politicians. They did, however, acknowledge that politicians are part of the problem. Speaking at a public forum held at Mahidol University's Salaya Campus in Nakhon Pathom on how the government is regulated by the charter, key figures from the Pheu Thai, Democrat and Chartthaipattana parties agreed the charter is designed to restrain the power of an elected government and strictly control party policies. The three main political parties are united in their criticism of the charter draft, saying it seeks to place excessive control over politicians. Khunying Sudarat Keyuraphan, a core member of the Pheu Thai Party, said the Meechai Ruchupan draft introduces mechanisms that seek to control any party that wins a majority in the House to the extent that an elected government will not be able to function. She said an elected government under the Meechai constitution will not be able to implement policies and will fall, unprecedentedly, under the control of the judiciary, independent public agencies and the Upper House. Democrat deputy leader Nipit Intarasombat said the draft charter has been drawn up out of fears of a "majority" in parliament and so it contains mechanisms to prevent any party that wins a majority from rising to power. "I believe a party that wins a majority has a mandate to form the government. There is no reason to keep them out. I can't accept it if the Senate joins in a vote to select the prime minister," he said. The Chartthaipattana Party's adviser Somsak Prissanananthakul said the draft charter has been written out of "spite" for politicians and it lacks public participation in the process when compared with the 1997 and 2007 versions of the charter. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


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Illegal wood seized

Posted by hasekamp on 18 June 2016 at 11:35 AM
A former forestry worker was arrested and 300 illegally processed teak planks and weapons seized from his house in Laplae district on Saturday. A combined team of soldiers, defence volunteers and forestry officials searched the house of Nares Khonkham in tambon Chaichumphon of this northern province after receiving a tip that many illegally processed planks were kept there. The officers found the house was loosely built with new teakwood planks. They seized 300 processed planks, two power saws, 82 rounds of bullets and two homemade guns from the house. Several more bullets were found inside his pickup truck. Mr Nares, 47, a former forestry worker, was arrested on charges of illegally having weapons in his possession and processing wood without permission. (Source: the Bangkok Post)


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Probably new speedboat regulations

Posted by hasekamp on 14 June 2016 at 17:21 PM
Officials from the Phuket Marine Office (PMO) told the Phuket Gazette that the investigation into a fatal speedboat collision in Phang Nga Bay on June 8, may result in additional regulations for speedboat operators. Tanthai Wongsayree, an officer with the PMO, said that staff are in the process of reviewing the causes of the boat collision, which injured more than 20 tourists and killed two Chinese nationals. Mr Tanthai said officials were brainstorming additional regulations that may prevent such an incident happening again. "As of right now, the legal process lies with Phang Nga officials, because it happened in Phang Nga Bay," Mr Tanthai said. "They are of course communicating with us during their investigations, as this incident will undoubtedly affect Phuket's image." (Source: The Phuket Gazette)


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Massage parlour faces 14 charges

Posted by hasekamp on 14 June 2016 at 17:16 PM
The owner and manager of Nataree Massage, whose whereabouts are unknown, have each been slapped with 14 charges ranging from commercial sexual exploitation of underage girls to sheltering illegal migrants. The Criminal Court on Tuesday approved arrest warrants for Prasert Sookkhi, 58, and Sommai Padsing, 45, on charges related to the raid on the Ratchadaphisek Road venue. Pol Col Chayut Marayat, deputy chief of the Metropolitan Police Bureau's (MPB) Division 1, said the ongoing investigation indicated that Mr Prasert is the owner of the massage parlour but he used others to act as proxies. Mr Sommai was the parlour's manager and holder of its operating licence, issued under the Entertainment Venue Control Act. The 14 alleged offences brought against the men include running a prostitution business, acting as a procurer, sexual exploitation of children and youth under 18 years of age, providing shelter for illegal migrants, and employing foreigners without work permits. Both men fled arrest and are still at large after Department of Provincial Administration officials, police and soldiers raided the parlour in Huai Khwang district on June 7. The operation netted 121 alleged sex workers, including 77 foreigners and several under the age of 18. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


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THAI orders 12 Airbus A350

Posted by hasekamp on 13 June 2016 at 17:19 PM
THAI AIRWAYS International Plc has ordered 12 new Airbus A350 XWB aircraft, eight of them on lease. The first aircraft is scheduled to arrive in August and is expected to replace an old plane on the Bangkok-Melbourne route. The Airbus A350 XWB is a mid-size long-range commercial aircraft and billed as the most technologically advanced aircraft in the world as well as the most modern and efficient aircraft. "The national airline will receive delivery of its first Airbus A350 XWB in August 2016, with the second aircraft to be delivered in September 2016, and the remainder to be delivered in 2017. Initially, the Airbus A350 will operate roundtrip on the Bangkok-Melbourne route," the carrier said. The delivery of the two Airbus A350 XWB aircraft this year will enable THAI to offer consistent, high-quality products to its passengers on various routes with increased efficiency. As Australia is one of major markets for Thai tourism, passengers will be able to experience superior comfort and convenience on the A350 XWB, enjoying exceptional service that has received international awards and worldwide recognition. The A350 XWB is wide and spacious, providing passengers with comfort and convenience in all classes of travel, with more headroom, wider panoramic windows, and larger overhead space. THAI's A350 XWB consists of 321 seats. For Royal Silk Class, there will be 32 seats designed |for maximum business-class comfort. (Source: The Nation)


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More tha 1000 arrests for gambling

Posted by hasekamp on 13 June 2016 at 16:57 PM
More than 1,000 gambler and bookie suspects were arrested in the past two days after police's anti-football betting operation centre was launched and so far no minors were found to involve in this vice yet, said deputy national police chief Pongsapat Pongcharoen Monday.In his capacity to chair the centre launched ahead of the Euro 2016 tournament, Pongsapat also at 9am received campaign materials from Government Lottery Office (GLO) board member Lt Col Noon Sansanakhom and other anti-gambling networks at the Royal Thai Police head office. Noon said the GLO foundation for social development and allies produced 2,000 vinyl signs saying "[people's] lives are safe if refrain from football gambling" for the centre to pass onto nationwide precincts. He also urged public members to alert the authorities about football betting activities via the hotline 191 or 1599. (Source: The Nation)


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Condition King improved

Posted by hasekamp on 13 June 2016 at 16:55 PM
His Majesty the King has shown signs of improvement following a recent operation to cure the narrowing of the arteries, the Royal Household Bureau said in a statement on Sunday. His heartbeat, breathing and blood pressure were normal, the statement said, adding that an electrocardiogram showed an increased supply of blood to the heart. In a June 7 statement, the bureau said the king had received treatment for narrowing of the heart arteries with "satisfactory results". (Source: The Nation)


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Thailand celebrates King's anniversary

Posted by hasekamp on 9 June 2016 at 22:14 PM
THE ENTIRE Kingdom yesterday celebrated the 70th anniversary of His Majesty the King's accession to the throne. Roads around the Grand Palace were closed yesterday morning for an alms-giving ceremony involving 770 Buddhist monks to celebrate the King's reign. Hundreds of people gathered before dawn to take part in the ceremony led by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and members of the Cabinet. Almost all wore yellow. In addition to the Buddhist ceremony held at the Grand Palace, religious ceremonies were also held by worshippers of Islam, Christianity, Hinduism and Sikhism at different places in the capital yesterday. Thai expatriates living overseas also joined their compatriots in Thailand in marking the auspicious occasion during ceremonies held at Thai embassies and consulates. Chanting by Buddhist monks was held and Thai expatriates and students wrote messages wishing for the King's good health. Participants also sang the Royal Anthem together. People wore yellow - the colour of His Majesty's birthday Monday - and took part in various philanthropic activities throughout Thailand to mark the occasion. In Phuket, residents and tourists released 470 turtles into the sea as part of activities marking the occasion. Similar events were also held in five other Andaman Sea coastal provinces - Phang-nga, Satun, Krabi, Trang and Ranong - where a total of 500 turtles were released. Residents of the seaside Samut Sakhon province yesterday planted 770 saplings in a local mangrove forest. In Lop Buri, more than 200 local residents helped with the dredging of canals and removing weeds to clear the waterways. Long queues formed at commercial banks all over the country yesterday, as people flocked to buy commemorative Bt70 banknotes printed by the Bank of Thailand to mark the 70th anniversary. The banknotes were sold at Bt100 each and the sale was limited to two banknotes per person. Despite the limit, all the commemorative banknotes sold out at many bank branches just hours after the sale began. (Source: The Nation)


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King cannot attend accession ceremony

Posted by hasekamp on 9 June 2016 at 22:07 PM
A team of doctors caring for His Majesty the King have treated the monarch's narrowed coronary arteries, and the outcome is satisfactory, according to the 27th statement issued by the Royal Household Bureau Tuesday. On Sunday, the doctors at Siriraj Hospital detected a change in electric waves in the monarch's heart. A blood test also indicated a possible lack of blood flow to the heart muscles. A coronary angiography revealed narrowed sections in the heart's right blood vessel and a branch of the heart's left blood vessel. The doctors on Tuesday treated the condition by using balloon angioplasty, stents, as well as rotablation to widen the narrowing, without the use of anaesthetic. The result was satisfactory. The doctors will continue to observe His Majesty the King's condition closely. Meanwhile the government will organise a ceremony to give alms to monks nationwide Thursday (June 9) to mark the 70th anniversary of His Majesty the King's accession to the throne. In Bangkok, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha will preside over the ceremony at the Grand Palace in which 770 men will be ordained into the monkhood. The government is also persuading people to wear yellow and blue which are the colours of Their Majesties the King and Queen respectively. People are also invited to decorate their homes with flags with the ceremony logo and national flag.(Source: The Bangkok Post)


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Abbot Tiger Temple tries to save his skin

Posted by hasekamp on 9 June 2016 at 22:00 PM
The abbot of the Tiger Temple had nothing to do with the alleged abuse and illegal trading of tigers and tiger parts, according to his representatives who have put the blame squarely on temple staff and officials. The message was conveyed by the temple's lawyer and a former politician at a news conference at the front gate of the temple in Kanchanaburi province on Thursday. Although the temple had said earlier that abbot Phra Wisutthi Sarathera would brief the media, he was seen only for a moment on a golf cart, feeding animals behind the secured gate of his temple in Sai Yok district before and afterwards. The 61-year-old abbot, also known as Luang Ta Chan, told Thai and foreign reporters that he was ill. Temple staff prohibited outsiders from entering the temple and took snapshots of reporters. On behalf of the abbot, former Thai Rak Thai MP Siri Wangboonkerd and lawyer Saiyud Pengboonchu said the abbot had a heart disease and it was inconvenient for him to speak to reporters. They denied reports that the Tiger Temple or Wat Pa Luangta Maha Bua Yannasampanno was involved in wildlife trafficking. "The recent issues and bad publicity faced by the temple were attempts to frame the abbot, although the temple's business was run by its foundation and the abbot had nothing to do with it," they said. The senior monk only offered the temple as a place for tigers to live in and arranged for their food, his representatives said, adding the tigers were supervised by veterinarian Somchai Wisetmongkolchai, who had done the job for 17 years. (Source: The Bangkok Post)


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Hotel in Koh Chang collapses

Posted by hasekamp on 5 June 2016 at 22:16 PM
One tourist was killed and seven others were trapped inside a two-story beachfront hotel on Koh Chang when it collapsed following torrential rains this morning. Koh Chang police commander Col Arwat Pibulsawat said the Siam Beach Hotel near Siam Beach in Kaibae Village tumbled down at 6 am. He said a two-year-old child was among the trapped tourists. Rescuers and local residents were racing against time to try to rescue the trapped tourists. Koh Chang district chief Kamthon Wehon said the hotel had four rooms and was built next to a mountain. Mr Kamthon said the torrential rains caused the land to subside, leading to the collapse, although the real cause of the disaster would need to be investigated, he added. (Source: The Phuket Gazette)


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