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The Governor would like to see 30,000 rally on Phuket for peace

Giant Phuket Rally Planned to Push for 'Plus Six'

Friday, May 15, 2009
A HUGE public rally aimed at showing Phuket's support for having the Asean Plus Six Summit on the island is being planned, the Governor, Wichai Praisa-nob, said today.

He said the rally was originally going to be held on Tuesday in expectation that 30,000 people would gather at Saphan Hin public park in Phuket City to support the summit.

Now the rally, like the summit, has been postponed.

But the governor says that the rally will be organised again soon, giving Phuket residents the opportunity to sign a large petition to the prime Minister in support of the summit being held on Phuket later this year.

Twice now the important meeting of 16 national leaders has been scheduled for Phuket, and twice the island has been disappointed.

The postponement, Governor Wichai said today, would give Phuket more time to prepare, and to prove that any important conference could be held in complete peace on the holiday island.

He said he was delighted that the leader of the island's red shirts had come to him earlier this week, pledging that there would be no protests if the summit had gone ahead as scheduled on June 13-14.

That message of unity was important, the governor said, along with the need for proper preparation so the island can eventually succeed in hosting Asean Plus Six.

Among the efforts already being made to be ready for the national leaders, if all goes well, in October:

..an island beautification program that will see unsightly trees and foliage reshaped and new shrubs and trees planted;

..new scanners that can detect drugs to be provided at the Thatchatchai Checkpoint, at the entrance to the island from the mainland;

..broadening the ''eye of the pineapple'' scheme that entails the appointment of 300 volunteers with walkie-talkies to monitor unusual activity.

Kata-Karon, where the Asean Plus Six Summit was to be held at the Hilton Arcadia Phuket Resort, will be the first area where the ''eye of the pineapple'' plan is to be implemented.

Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva has said his government will do ''whatever is necessary'' to guarantee the security of future meetings hosted by Thailand as chair of Asean, a post it holds until December.

A low-key meeting of senior officials from 27 countries on regional security is to go ahead on Phuket between Monday and Wednesday next week.

The 27 countries at the meeting will be: Brunei, Burma, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, Australia, Canada, China, the EU, India, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, Russia, US, the Democratic Republic of Korea, Mongolia, Pakistan, East Timor, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, plus Papua New Guinea as an observer.

The governor also said today that the plan for a second wide road from the airport to Phuket City was proceeding, with a good reaction to the proposal from land owners.

They would suddenly find themselves with more valuable properties, facing a major thoroughfare.

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Asean Plus Six Summit Postponed Until October
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Phuket Red Shirts Speak Out: We Want Peace
Latest Whether there are red shirts on Phuket has been a matter of speculation. Now the island's red shirt leaders are stepping forward, waving a flag of peace, for the Asean Plus Six Summit.
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Monday July 6, 2020
Horizon Karon Beach Resort & Spa

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