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MediaWATCH:  Curfew extended one more week; Thaksin Arrest Sought; Red Shirts Warn of New Rally; Thai Wins Top Cannes Prize

MediaWATCH: Curfew extended one more week; Thaksin Arrest Sought; Red Shirts Warn of New Rally; Thai Wins Top Cannes Prize

Monday, May 24, 2010

THE CURFEW has been extended until May 31 in Bangkok and provinces where a state of emergency has been declared, with the curfew hours reduced to midnight to 4am.

THE Department of Special Investigations will seek a warrant from Criminal Court justices today for the arrest of former Thailand PM Thaksin Shinawatra on terrorism charges, Thairath newspaper reports. Mr Thaksin is already on the run and wanted in Thailand on fraud charges. During the Bangkok uprising, his Canadian lawyer made a visit to the red barricades, but later denied Mr Thaksin had any connection with the protest. Thailand's economy expanded the most since 1995 last quarter, before the nation's worst political violence in 18 years undermined recovery.''It's very unfortunate for Thailand,'' said Lim Su Sian, an economist at Royal Bank of Scotland Plc in Singapore. ''The second quarter will be a write-off.'' British Airways is facing five days of immediate strike action after last-ditch efforts to avert a walkout by cabin crew collapsed. A second wave of action begins on June 5.

Phuketwan MediaWATCH

A daily wrap of Thailand news, with a Phuket perspective, plus relevant reports from national and international media. Like Canada, many countries are advising their citizens to avoid travel to Thailand. Tourism accounts for about six percent of Thailand's GDP and employs 15 percent or more of its workforce. A prolonged downturn in the industry will be felt across the country. Thailand's red shirts, bloodied but apparently unbowed, say they will gather tens of thousands of people in fresh rallies that will start this week here in Chiang Mai, the country's second-largest city, which is currently a no-go area for Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva. The pressing question for Thailand's future now is whether the Bangkok elites who support the current government and oppose the red shirts will understand why disaffection is spreading. These protests have tapped into a long-simmering brew of ethnic and economic tensions bubbling below the surface of Thai society.

Quote of the Day

People in north Thailand and northeast Thailand have a different culture than people in Bangkok - Pongpan Chumjai, Chiang Mai-based journalist Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva said that new elections could be considered only after violence and protests ended completely. The Thai leader's comments indicated that he would continue to take a tough line against the red shirt protesters and would not make a grand gesture of announcing immediate elections to heal the rift, as some had expected.

Associated Press Thousands of residents mobilised in cleanup squads to clear the streets of garbage and rubble left by the protests and violence. Schools, government offices and the stock exchange were to reopen Monday, and Abhisit said he will move back to his office from an army base where he had a temporary workplace during the unrest. Thai director Apichatpong Weerasethakul won the Palme d'Or top prize at the Cannes film festival for a surreal reincarnation tale, 'Lung Boonmee Raluek Chat' (Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives). Apichatpong, 39, was a surprise best film winner after critics strongly tipped French director Xavier Beauvois, who took the runner-up Grand Prix for 'Of Gods and Men,' about Catholic monks threatened by Islamists in Algeria. An Air India spokesman said about 30 to 40 relatives of the crash victims who died near Mangalore on Saturday have been flown from the United Arab Emirates in two separate flights. Only eight of the 166 people on board Air India Flight IX-812 survived the crash. Singapore is ranked first in the world for the lowest estimated rates of children under five who die each year for 2010, followed by Iceland, Sweden, Cyprus and Luxembourg. In the US - whose ranking has dropped from 20th to 42 since 1970 - the mortality rate is nearly double the European average. But the proportion of under-five children who die each year across the globe has dropped 60 percent over the past four decades. The Pattaya hotel market is facing another dismal year with occupancy of four- and five-star properties possibly falling to 49.9 percent, which would be even lower than last year's weak average of 54 percent, said Apisit Limlomwongse, managing director of Nexus Property Consultants. In 2006, four- and five-star hotel occupancy reached almost 72 percent and peaked in 2007. As the currency crashes and the Continent is swept by protests, even key members such as Germany and France are starting to think the unthinkable about the euro. Spanish trade unions have already announced plans for industrial action in early June, and among the 30 percent unemployed, there is talk of joining them for what could be a long and possibly violent summer of street protests.

Phuket Coming Events

May 26 Boy George plays at Seduction, Phuket.
May 31-June 5 Eight-nation football tournament for players over 55 at Surakul Stadium in Phuket City. Britain, Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Taiwan, Iran, Armenia competing.
June 4-13 Phuket International Film Festival, Coliseum Cineplex, Phuket City.
June 13 Laguna Phuket International Marathon. Fun runs, too.
June 25 to 27 Second Kathu Culture Road Fair, recalling the region's history
July 21-25 Phuket Six Senses Race Week, Evason, Rawai
July 4 Planned US Phuket Navy League Independence Day party on Patong shorefront at Loma Park
December 4-11 Phuket King's Cup Regatta

January 6-9 PIMEX boat show, Royal Phuket Marina
February 9-13 The Bay Regatta - Phuket, Phang Nga, Krabi
Phuket's Bid For a Better Future Starts Monday
News Analysis Tuk tuks with meters and proper public transport . . . basic economic improvements are essential if Phuket is to make a speedy comeback.
Phuket's Bid For a Better Future Starts Monday

Phuket Paraglider Crashes to Earth
PHOTO ALBUM A paraglider who misjudged his flight path came a cropper, crashed into a cliff and broke a leg, then needed carrying up. It was all part of the first Phuket Fun Fly.
Phuket Paraglider Crashes to Earth

Phuket Expats say, 'We Shall Overcome'
PHOTO ALBUM If resilient spirits are a guide to Phuket's future, then Phuket will prosper again, and soon. The tropical holiday island remains a safe destination for tourists.
Phuket Expats say, 'We Shall Overcome'

Cyclists Enjoy the Wheel Old Phuket: Photos
PHOTO ALBUM The legs and lungs folk tour the attractions Phuket City's Old Phuket Town in a display of pedal power. With higher fares, two wheels, no motor, may be the coming thing.
Cyclists Enjoy the Wheel Old Phuket: Photos

Phuket Music Fest to Rekindle Noise Debate
Latest A free full moon music festival over two nights on a Phuket beach is expected to attract thousands of fans and turn up the decibels on the debate about noise versus sound.
Phuket Music Fest to Rekindle Noise Debate


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Friday June 25, 2021
Horizon Karon Beach Resort & Spa


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