Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva reaffirms that the government is duty bound to resolve the present situation.
During a televised address, Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva informed the public of the Thai Cabinet’s decision to declare a severe emergency situation.
The Declaration of a Severe Emergency Situation covers areas of Bangkok and certain districts of five nearby provinces. These are:
– The districts of Muang, Bang Phli, Phra Pradang, Phra Samut Chedi, Bang Boh, and Bang Sao Thong Districts in Samut Prakan province
– The districts of Thanyaburi, Lad Lumkaew, Sam Kok, Lam Luk Ka, and Khlong Luang in Pathum Thani province
– Phutthamonthon district in Nakhon Pathom province
– The districts of Wang Noi, Bang Pa-in, Bang Sai, and Lat Bua Luang in Ayutthaya province
Prime Minister Abhisit emphasized that the government’s aim is to restore normalcy and ensure the sanctity of the law, and all actions that will be taken will be in accordance with the law and international standards. There is no intention of using the law to suppress or harm those who are innocent.
The use of the Emergency Decree is intended to enable the government to restore normalcy in the various areas in Bangkok.
The Prime Minister reiterated that he wants to see the country in a peaceful state, but also accepts that different opinions still exist. Prime Minister Abhisit emphasized that the government will use the law to create peace and order, but will use the law carefully. Clear instructions have been given to all security agencies that officers exercise the utmost restraint, and should the situation escalate, that they take a graduated response – from light to heavy measures — in accordance with internationally accepted practices, with due respect to human rights principles.
The anti-government rallies being staged by the United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship (UDD)/”Red Shirt” movement continue at the following demonstration sites:
– Ratchadamnoen Avenue
– Makkawan Rangsan Bridge near Government House in Bangkok
– Ratchaprasong intersection
Visitors and tourists are advised to avoid areas near all UDD rally sites.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ 24-hour operation center provides foreigners with further information. Please call +662-575-1023, +662-981-7225, +66-88-022-1540, or +66-88-022-1541.
Both city airports (Suvarnabhumi and Don Mueang) are operating as normal.
All other international and domestic airports in Thailand remain fully operational.
Travel to all other parts of the kingdom has not been affected. Tourism activities in all other areas continue as normal.
MICE venues in all other areas of Bangkok and around Thailand are also operating as normal.
Thai Tourism Industry representatives are on stand-by to provide round-the-clock assistance to foreign tourists and visitors.
The Tourism Authority of Thailand Tourism Intelligence Unit and Crisis Communication Centre (TIC) serves as an operations center for state and private sector consultative meetings and joint planning sessions and enables TAT and representatives from the Thai tourism industry to plan and execute rapid and orchestrated responses. The TIC is currently being staffed 24 hours a day. Representatives from Thailand’s Ministry of Tourism and Sports, the Tourist Police, the Thai Hotels Association (THA), the Association of Thai Travel Agents (ATTA), and the General Insurance Association will also be on duty at the center.
The TAT Hotline and Call Centre — 1672 — provides 24-hour service. TAT recommends that foreign tourists and visitors to Thailand call 1672 for tourist assistance. In the event that further coordination or facilitation is needed, they will be directed to the nearest TAT Tourist Information Centre.
TAT recommends that foreign tourists and visitors to Thailand call the 24-hour Tourist Police Hotline — 1155 — for the latest updates on traffic conditions and roads to avoid.
HOTLINES & CALL CENTER NUMBERS
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
24-Hour Operation Centre
For enquiries from foreign visitors +66 (0) 2575-1023
+66 (0) 2981-7225
TAT Call Centre 1672
Tourist Police 1155
General Insurance Association 1356
Thai Airways International (THAI) +66 (0) 2356-1111
Suvarnabhumi Airport +66 (0) 2132-1888
POLITICAL DEVELOPMENTS IN THAILAND
Please click on this link to view the latest situation updates by Thailand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs
For the latest updates, please visit: www.TATnews.org