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Thailand Live Friday 17 Sep 2010


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Thailand Live Friday 17 September 2010

News, Bits and Tweets

with webfact

Keep up to date with live updates from the news, hour by hour.

For breaking news,national, regional and international news updates on

a daily basis only, this thread is closed to commentary so that those

who wish to follow the news can find it here...

Commentary is still open for Thailand news in the relevant thread posted in News Clippings.

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Related topic: Thailand Live Thursday 16 September 2010

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Bhumjaithai confirms unity with Democrats despite disagreement over amnesty bill

BANGKOK (NNT) -- The coalition Bhumjaithai Party has confirmed good ties with the ruling Democrat Party despite its latest proposition in support of

amnesty for red-shirt and yellow-shirt protestors.

Deputy Interior Minister Boonjong Vongtrirat, in his capacity as Bhumjaithai Party deputy leader, told the press that the party’s representatives will meet government whips on Wednesday to discuss the possibility of lifting the charge against the supporters of the anti-government United Front of Democracy

Against Dictatorship (UDD) as well as those of the People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) who violated the law during their demonstrations.

Mr Boonjong stated that the amnesty law proposed will not apply to political convicts and those who have been suspended from political activities. He also affirmed that its proposal was not intended to pressure the Democrat Party or to spark conflicts among the coalition partners. The proposal will have to be sounded out by the House before being processed further.

Bhumjaithai Party has suggested publicly, citing an effort to bring reconciliation back to society, to ask the legislature to consider granting amnesty to protestors who have pleaded guilty of criminal charges for their involvement in the rallies staged in the last few years.

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-- NNT 2010-09-17 footer_n.gif

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Democrat MP sentenced to 2-months in jail, 5-year ban from politics for false assets declaration statement

BANGKOK: -- Supreme Court's Criminal Division for Holders of Political Positions on Thursday sentenced Democrat MP Chumphon Kanchana to two-month jail term and banned him from politics for five years for falsely declaring his assets.

Mr Chumphon, MP for Surat Thani, was also sentenced a fine of 4,000 baht, but his jail term was suspended for one year as the court said he has never committed an illegal action before.

The court's verdict came as the National Anti-Corruption Commission November last year filed the case to the court, saying Mr Chumphon had intentionally submitted false assets statement by concealing his debt 13 times since 1997, valued about Bt200 million.

The political ban takes effect immediately after the court ruling.

Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva, as leader of Democrat Party, conceded on Thursday that the Supreme Court's ruling to ban Mr Chumphon from politics does impact the party's ability to gather vote in the Parliament.

The premier added the party is now trying to contact the banned MP but he was not available for comment. (MCOT online news)

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-- TNA 2010-09-17

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Khon Kaen Prepared for Red-shirt Rally

The Khon Kaen local administration is confident violence will not occur during the September 19 red-shirt rally.

Nonetheless, security precautions have been implemented to ensure public safety.

Khon Kaen Governor Phayat Chanprasert has pointed out red-shirt activities are on the rise and insisted that Khon Kaen's emergency rule must not be revoked to ensure public safety.

The situation is being monitored closely and there have been no reports of unusual activities.

The Provincial Police Bureau 4 will be conducing a crowd control drill tomorrow as a security precaution.

Over the weekend, the army will be holding various public events, including a concert, Buddhist sermons and a tree planting.

It is expected that people from neighboring provinces will also attend the events.

The governor also said red-shirt supporters have visited their relatives detained at Khon Kaen Prison.

He said the visit was orderly and the situation remained under control.

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-- Tan Network 2010-09-17

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Protesters Warned to Abide by Law

The commander of the Metropolitan Police Division 1 has issued a warning to red-shirt demonstrators not to engage in any illegal activity or block traffic during their upcoming September 19 rally.

Commander of the Metropolitan Police Division 1, Police Major General Wichai Sangprapai, said he has coordinated with Sombat Boon-ngam-anong, leader of a red-shirt affiliate, on which kinds of activity are allowed and which are not at the the political rally to be held from September 17 to 19.

Wichai has issued a warning that those who break the law will be prosecuted.

Red-shirt protesters have been planning a gathering to remember those who were killed during their rally in April and May by tying pieces of red cloth at Ratchaprasong Intersection on September 19 from 5 P.M. to 7 P.M.

At the same time, the Student Federation of Thailand is organizing another activity at Thammasat University.

The police have warned protesters not to block traffic during the rally.

Wichai did not confirm having received reports about armed black-shirted militants but only said that it is the police's responsibility to maintain peace and order.

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-- Tan Network 2010-09-17

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Search for Miss Thailand Begins

A press conference to announce the application process for this year's Miss Thailand pageant was held on Tuesday.

The dresses that will be worn by the three finalists were also unveiled at the press conference.

Miss Thailand, the country's first beauty pageant, is a joint effort by MCOT and the alumni association of Vajiravudh College.

For this year's Miss Thailand contest, there will be a reality show to capture contestant's activities in high definition.

The show will be hosted by popular talk-show host Woody Milintachinda.

The dresses that will be worn by the three finalists were unveiled at the press conference.

Past finalists modeled them and encouraged Thai women to partake in this year's contest.

Thai women between the age of 18 to 25 who are taller than 165 centimeters can download an application form at: www.mcot.net/missthailand.

The final round is scheduled to take place on October 22 at the Aksra Theater on Rang Nam Road.

Miss Thailand began as an activity to celebrate the Constitution but later the winners went on to represent Thailand at the Miss World pageant.

The winner of Miss Thailand also serves as a cultural and tourism ambassador.

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-- Tan Network 2010-09-17

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Adminstrative Court orders 3G auction put off

BANGKOK (NNT) -- The Central Administrative Court granted a temporary injunction to put off 3G auction until the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) is formed.

According to the lawsuit filed by CAT Telecom to halt 3G license auction organized by the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC), the Administrative Court has made a temporary injunction on Thursday to postpone the license bidding.

CAT has made a petition against the NTC over its 3G licenses bidding organization, saying the NTC has no legal authority to manage the auction, as it is the authority of the NBTC which has not yet be formed.

The NTC, on the other side, will lodge an appeal against the Administrative Court on 17 September 2010, while the TOT Public Company has scheduled to file a lawsuit with the Court against the NTC on the same ground.

Basically, 3G licenses are scheduled to be bidden on 20 September 2010 at Evason Hua Hin Resort in Prachuap Khiri Khan province.

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-- NNT 2010-09-17 footer_n.gif

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Rapid response teams on standby to tackle flu

By The Nation

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Public Health Minister Jurin Laksanawisit said yesterday that the Surveillance and Rapid Response Team (SRRT) network would investigate the spread of the typeA (H1N1) virus from the tambon level, now that the flu has spread so widely and affected those in Parliament.

Signing a pact with the Tambon Administrative Organisation yesterday, Jurin said the ministry would have 1,030 SRRT teams cover provincial and district levels to watch for infections, investigate outbreaks and control the spread of the disease.

Citing the network's effectiveness, he said, once news broke about some MPs being infected, an SRRT team was sent to investigate and prevent further outbreaks. He said though dengue fever and the flu both had high fever as a key symptom, those with the flu also had a running nose. He advised all patients with high fever to go see the doctor.

Jurin also urged people to observe the ministry's advice to wash hands frequently, wear a facemask if infected and get vaccinated against the virus.

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-- The Nation 2010-09-17

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Dutch national in jail over threats

By The Nation

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A Dutch real estate businessman, who claimed to be son of the world's 11th richest man, was arrested along with a compatriot in Pattaya yesterday for allegedly making death threats to his former business partner.

The two men denied all charges.

Pol Lt Col Kwanpichai Manocharoensap, superintendent of the Crime Suppression Special Unit, led a team to apprehend Robert Henry Johannes, the owner of Dahan Co, and his associate, Winny Stregranus.

Johannes' former partner Chaiwat Lomakul had complained to police that, after he won a Bt25 million libel lawsuit against Johannes, the duo made death threats against him.

Police found that in 2007, Johannes was accused of forging documents regarding assets worth millions of baht in his divorce from his Thai wife. Johannes also claimed to be the son of Dutch oil tycoon Rene Dahan.

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-- The Nation 2010-09-17

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Six indicted over June bomb attack

By The Nation

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Public prosecutors yesterday indicted six people in connection with the failed bomb attack on the Bhum Jai Thai Party headquarters on June 22.

The Criminal Court will summon the suspects from remand centres to testify today.

The accused are Anek Singkhunthod, 26, for disguising himself as a fruit seller to place the bomb at the scene; Kampol Khamkong, 42, for organising the attack; Dejpol Phutthajong, 57, a redshirt supporter, for detonating the bomb via remote control; Korbchai Boonplod, 43, for letting the bomb makers use his home; and Warisriya Boonsom, 43, and Suriya Phumwong, 39, for assembling the bomb.

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-- The Nation 2010-09-17

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Workers to rally for wage hike

By The Nation

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Worker networks plan to stage a big rally in OctoberNovember to call for the nationwide implementation of a Bt250 daily minimum wage, a source from the networks said yesterday.

They agree with Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva's policy to give the minimum wage a large hike to Bt250 as it would help them cope with the cost of living better, while the tripartite wage board in practice edged wages up by only Bt1Bt2, the source said.

Wilaiwan Saetia, president of the Thai Labour Solidarity Committee, said the labour advocates of the On NoiOn Yai industrial areas, Phra Pradaeng, Rangsit, Pathum Thani and Saraburi would meet today to discuss cooperation in demanding for a vocational health institute, the restructuring of the Social Security Office and the hike in minimum wages nationwide this year.

A worker representative on the wage board, Jamras Chailangka, said the issue of minimum wages would not be a problem if Thailand if the wage structure and payment system standards were based on workers' skills.

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-- The Nation 2010-09-17

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Father asks hospital: why did baby son died

By Pongphon Sarnsamak

The Nation

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The Public Health Ministry has set up a committee to investigate why a 20monthsold boy died from pneumonia after being admitted to Kanchanaburi province's Tha Moung hospital.

The move came after the boy's father, Chief Petty Officer 1st Weeraphon Phutawachana, complained in a letter to Kanchanaburi province's governor about the death of his son Porphiang Phutawachana following his admission to the hospital.

Weeraphon said his son developed flulike symptoms and had trouble breathing. He underwent treatment at the hospital and died on August 6.

Public Health Ministry spokesperson Dr Suphan Srithamma said the ministry's permanent secretary, Dr Paijit Warachit, had instructed Kanchanaburi provincial public health officials to set up a committee to investigate the cause of Porphiang's death and report to Paijit immediately.

Suphan said he had been told Porphiang was admitted to hospital on August 6 after suffering flulike symptoms for two days, shortness of breath and high fever.

Doctors diagnosed he had pneumonia and asked for him to stay at the hospital to receive treatment. He was given oxygen and liquids.

An hour later, the boy developed more severe respiratory difficulties and was put on a tube to help him breathe.

His family asked the hospital to send the boy to Makarak Hospital. Gettin g ready for the transfer his condition worsened, despite being given oxygen, and he stopped breathing. Medical workers took him to the emergency room but he died at 2 pm.

"I am very sorry about the loss of Weeraphon's little boy - but I think the medical workers' team at the hospital followed the guidelines to save him from severe pneumonia," Suphan said.

He said pneumonia is the top infectious disease for killing children under 5 years. Bacteria infection is the main cause of this inflammatory condition of the lungs.

It could develop after a patient has had fever, cough, blocked throat and rapid breathing for two days. Suphan said parents whose kids develop these symptoms should take them to hospital immediately.

He said this year 43 percent of patients with pneumonia were children under 5.

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-- The Nation 2010-09-17

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BMA campaign to boost security

By THE NATION

Bangkok yesterday launched a campaign to encourage the public to help boost security in the capital ahead of three days of demonstrations by the red shirts.

Deputy Governor Thirachon Manomaipiboon, who presided over the kick-off of the "Week of Preventing Threats in the City", said the campaign organised by the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) "coincides" with the public demonstrations by the red shirts beginning today.

The BMA's inspectors, known as "thesakit", would work with police in guarding more than 40 locations, including homes of important figures, train and subway stations and other "symbolic" targets. He also called on residents to report anything suspicious or unusual.

The campaign includes a manual teaching residents how to recognise threats of terrorism and sabotage and how to memorise a suspect's identity and the vehicles used in crimes.

Police are also gearing up for the three days of public demonstrations by the red shirts to mark four years since the September 19, 2006 coup and four months after the May dispersal of the red rally following the recent political unrest.

More than 2,800 officers will be dispatched to keep law and order during the events. However, a police report predicts no violence will break out.

Today, the red shirts plan to lay flowers in front of Bangkok Remand Prison where their leaders are being held on terrorism charges in connection with the recent political turmoil.

Tomorrow, the red shirts will send off a cavalcade from Bangkok to Chiang Mai.

On Sunday, the red shirts will conduct a religious ceremony at Pathum Wanaram Temple and march from the Democracy Monument to Rajprasong Intersection.

Similar activities are set for provinces such as Chiang Mai and Lop Buri.

In Chiang Mai, a gathering of the red shirts is planned for tomorrow, with musical performances and possible phone-in speeches by red shirt leaders still at large, such as ex-premier Thaksin Shinawatra, Arisman Pongruangrong, Jakrapob Penkair and Jaran Ditthapichai.

Chartchai Suthiklom, director-general of the Corrections Department, said he has sent a memo to the chiefs of more than 100 prisons throughout the country to be cautious about any activities by the red shirts outside their compounds, although they should not panic. However, no disturbances were expected, he said.

More than 250 people are being detained at 17 corrections facilities throughout the country in connection with the recent political chaos.

Prompong Nopparit, spokesman for the opposition Pheu Thai Party, said the party's MPs going to join the red shirts in marking the September 19 coup are acting on their own and the party plans no joint activities with the red shirts.

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-- The Nation 2010-09-17

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Bhum Jai Thai determined to push through amnesty bill

By The Nation

The Bhum Jai Thai Party will not waver in its determination to push for the amnesty of protesters, even though the coalition whips have sent the draft back for a rewrite, Deputy Transport Minister Suchart Chokchaiwattanakorn said yesterday.

The coalition whips vetted the draft and found it incomprehensive because it only covered those involved in street protests in 2008 and 2009, but not those implicated in this year's unrest.

"By next week the party will debate on how to make the draft more comprehensive. Bhum Jai Thai MPs will also kick off a campaign to solicit signatures from 50,000 voters to co-sponsor the bill," Suchart said.

He added that his party believed that granting amnesty would bring about reconciliation and dismissed allegations of an ulterior motive to woo votes.

"My party is willing to heed any suggestions for mending fences if amnesty is deemed inappropriate by the prime minister and deputy prime minister," he said, in reference to objections raised by Abhisit Vejjajiva and Suthep Thaugsuban.

Bhum Jai Thai's de facto leader Newin Chidchob is also chairman of the Buriram-PEA football club, which has put up messages promoting amnesty on billboards around Bangkok.

At yesterday's meeting of coalition whips, Bhum Jai Thai's push for a debate on the amnesty bill was struck down on grounds that the draft failed to cover every protest linked to the turmoil and that the proposed amnesty did not cover barred party executives, considered necessary for reconciliation.

Commenting on the proposed bill, Pheu Thai Party deputy leader Plodprasop Suraswadi voiced suspicions about the coalition party's ulterior motives. The reasons behind his suspicions are as follows:

- Bhum Jai Thai's sudden decision to push for this bill is unexplainable;

- Why Newin, who has been keeping a low profile, has suddenly come out to promote this bill;

- Is this bill being hastily pushed through because someone wants to foil the process of seeking the truth on the turmoil;

- Pushing this bill as a reconciliation option differs from the paths taken by Abhisit and ex-premier Thaksin Shinawatra;

- The noise generated by the amnesty debate is overshadowing the alleged irregularities involving the junior coalition party.

Panel chairman Kanit na Nakorn said he was not informed of the push for amnesty even though he was in charge of truth and reconciliation. "I don't know the political justification for the amnesty bill," he said.

He added that in lieu of granting pardon following conviction, his approach was to rule out the prosecution of protesters who did not instigate violence.

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-- The Nation 2010-09-17

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Red-shirts at Klongprem Prison Swell to 2,000

The number of red-shirt protesters at Klongprem prison has swelled to 2,000. The left lane of traffic on Ngamwongwan Road, where the prison is located, is now closed off, causing massive jams.

Motorists are advised to use Chaengwattana Road instead.

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-- Tan Network 2010-09-17

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Thai stocks open 7.12 pt, 0.77 pct lower

Thai composite stocks index (SET) opened on Friday at 917.69, down 7.12 points, or 0.77 per cent.

Blue chip SET-50 index was at 627.73, down 5.63 points, or 0.89 per cent.

Top five active (value) stocks: ADVANC, TRUE, DTAC, PTT, TCAP.

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-- The Nation 2010-09-17

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Red-shirts Disperse from Klongprem Prison

The red-shirt protesters have dispersed from the front of the Klongprem prison, helping to improve traffic congestion on Ngamwongwan Road.

Red-shirt leaders have announced they will be holding weekly gatherings like this in the future.

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-- Tan Network 2010-09-17

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