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Braid on parade: Phuket visit for the navy's top brass

Top Admiral Salutes Phuket

Wednesday, December 17, 2008
THE Royal Thai Navy's Commander in Chief, Admiral Kamtorn Pumhiran, visited Phuket today to meet the sailors of the Andaman's naval bases.

Promoted in October, it was the admiral's chance to promote others doing their maritime service at the Cape Panwa base.

He arrived to a salute from the sailors of the Third Naval Command, led by Vice Admiral Narong Testvisan.

Admiral Kamtorn said the navy had an important role in protecting Thailand's sovereignty at sea.

''We can help in times of trouble, too,'' he said, ''as the navy showed in the 2004 tsunami.''

He said the navy aimed to serve tourists as well as locals. There was a warm relationship between the navy and local communities along the Andaman coast.

The many facets of the navy's role included rebuilding homes after the tsunami, catching drug smugglers at sea, and preventing illegal immigrants from reaching Thailand.

The navy did not need better weapons, but it did need better facilities for building and repairing its vessels, he said.

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