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 Thailand reassures foreigners following Bangkok hospital attack


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Thailand reassures foreigners following Bangkok hospital attack

 

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Thai military personnel check the bags of visitors at an entrance of the Phramongkutklao Hospital in Bangkok, Thailand, May 23, 2017. REUTERS/Chaiwat Subprasom

 

BANGKOK (Reuters) - Thailand's foreign ministry on Tuesday reassured the international community that the country would increase security at sensitive locations a day after a bomb exploded at a hospital in the capital Bangkok wounding 24 people.

 

Thailand has been ruled by a junta since a May 2014 coup. The attack on Monday coincided with the third anniversary of the takeover and the army has blamed the incident on groups opposed to military rule.

 

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack which happened at the military-owned Phramongkutklao Hospital.

 

"Bombs will have an impact anywhere," Thailand's Foreign Minister Don Pramudwinai told reporters on Tuesday.

 

"Any action at a hospital violates human rights … I would like the foreigners to know that security forces are looking after this," he said.

 

"We didn't want this to happen. If we can catch those behind this even better," he added.

 

One of the most popular holiday destinations in Southeast Asia, Thailand attracted 32.6 million visitors last year, a rise of nearly 9 percent from the previous year.

 

The country's beaches and city destinations continue to lure travellers with Chinese making up the largest group of tourists.

 

But Thailand has been rocked by attacks, including a series of explosions last year at popular beach locations, which cast a shadow over Thailand's safety credentials.

 

The beach attacks killed four people and wounded dozens, a day after Thais voted overwhelmingly to accept a military-backed constitution that critics said would only serve to entrench military power.

 

Thailand's military seized power on May 22, 2014 to end months of street action aimed at overthrowing a populist movement that had won several national elections since 2001.

 

The coup was the 12th military takeover since 1932 when Thailand saw the end of an absolute monarchy.

 

Junta spokesman Winthai Suvaree said security would be increased following Monday's attack.

 

"Any security measures that are not working will need to change," junta spokesman Winthai told reporters at Bangkok's Government House.

 

On May 15, a small bomb went off near the National Theatre in Bangkok's old quarter, wounding two people. It was not clear who was behind the bomb. An explosion outside a former government lottery office on April 5 wounded two others.

 

Army chief Chalermchai Sitthisat said on Monday that he believed the two attacks were linked to the hospital attack, adding that the materials used to make the bombs were the same.

 

(Reporting by Amy Sawitta Lefevre, Panarat Thepgumpanat and Pracha Hariraksapitak; Writing by Amy Sawitta Lefevre; Editing by Michael Perry)

 
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-- © Copyright Reuters 2017-05-23
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Ah, this explains why there were two people manning the metal detector machine at the MRT this morning. They both had torches, but they let me waltz through with my laptop and bag completely unchecked. 

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There is no such thing as 100 percent  security.

I spent 5 years in the U.S. army in Vietnam. and 3 more as a civilian government employee.

They missed me twice, although they tried a few times more.

Wouldn't be Ironic if I checked out in Bangkok at 70 years of age.

 

 

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Was at River City last week enjoying a bite and the river view at one of the cafe's on the pier. The area was absolutely heaving with tourists getting on Chao Praya River cruise boats, plus all the cafes on the promenade were full (not just Chinese either and anyone who thinks tourist #s are down needs to get off their Nana bar stool etc).  Suddenly soldiers appeared out of seemingly nowhere and began rushing about,  checking everywhere. Then they formed small groups and spaced out, eyes darting everywhere.  Most tourists seemed to take this in stride. Personally just got our checkbin and got out of there. This ain't my first rodeo or potential bomb scare here. Seen many since 2006, and many with same m.o. imho (no matter past efforts to disguise). The General is likely well aware another crude negotiation is underway. Always seems to step up when someone's finances are about to be confiscated....

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2 hours ago, rkidlad said:

Ah, this explains why there were two people manning the metal detector machine at the MRT this morning. They both had torches, but they let me waltz through with my laptop and bag completely unchecked. 

What does that say about where the threat comes from?  Sinister hands at work.

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"Thailand reassures foreigners following Bangkok hospital attack"  

"Not to worry, they aren't targetting the foreigners.  You can still come and spend your money here."

 

 

They're acknowledging that Thais don't hate foreigners, Thais hate Big P...so stay away from places where uniforms gather and you should be fine [emoji6]

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, stephen tracy said:

Tourist areas will not be targeted as that would be fatal for the junta  They will stick to targets that will not harm tourism too much, and that can be pinned on so-called "enemies of the state".  Ironic, no?

Erawan shrine was not a tourist center?

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"Any security measures that are not working will need to change," junta spokesman Winthai told reporters at Bangkok's Government House.

 

I see checkpoints at all entrances to most malls, at MRT entrances and in 2 years never saw one bag inspected. Foux security does not work. 

But how many malls have been bombed? Oops does Big C count?

Edited by Grumpy Duck
Forgot a punchline
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10 hours ago, stephen tracy said:

Tourist areas will not be targeted as that would be fatal for the junta  They will stick to targets that will not harm tourism too much, and that can be pinned on so-called "enemies of the state".  Ironic, no?

where did you get that information? Remember the blast in downtown BKK not too long ago??

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