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Thailand News - Our News Blog




We Deliver News Directly from Thailand



We are based in Thailand and want to offer a neutral news blog that describes current events in the country. We will be careful not to focus on personal opinions but instead provide factual news directly from Thailand, together with comments. The goal is to be fast, simple and accurate.




dateiconApril 27, 2012



Famous Boxer Sued for 100 Million



Buakaw, one of Thailand's most distinguished and famous Thai boxers, has been sued by Teerapat Rojanatan who is the owner of Pramuk Gym, where Buakaw previously trained. A court has scheduled to hold its first hearing on July 16th.

The gym owner is also suing the organizer of Thai Fight, a famous Thai boxing tournament with the world's elite Muay Thai-fighters, and Mr. Buakaw for breach of contract. Teerapat wants 100 million baht altogether, in compensation because he claims that there is a binding agreement between his camp and the boxer.

Buakaw is the world champions in different organizations in Muay Thai (2006, 2009 and 2011), world champion in K-1 World MAX (2004 and 2006) and World Champion in Shoot Boxing (2010).

It may be added that Muay Thai and Thai boxing are the same thing. The word muay (มวย) means boxing. Newsstop

SOURCE: TAN NETWORK


Buakaw - Sombat Banchamek
BUAKAW, A CHAMPION OF THE RING - Photo by: จอมโจร




dateiconApril 23, 2012



British Teacher Busted with Ya-Ice



A 42-year-old British citizen was arrested yesterday with three plastic bags containing 20.56 grams of 'ya ice' (crystal meth). This drug is classified as a Class 1 drug, ie the category of drugs that carries the most severe penalties.

The raid took place in an undercover operation and the Englishman will probably have to spend years or even decades in a Thai jail.

The man states that he first used the drug for personal use, but then ran out of money and then began selling it to tourists and Thai bar girls to compensate "his low salary." He stated that he worked as an English teacher at the respected Singsamut School.

Our thoughts: Teacher by day and drug dealer at night, in a country with extremely severe penalties for drug offenses! Sometimes I wonder how some people reason. Clearly, this is a personal tragedy and a lack of moral responsibility. Newsstop

SOURCE: PATTAYA ONE


Looking for 10,000 Chinese Teachers



The Thai Ministry of Education are looking for ten thousand teachers from China to teach Chinese language to Thai students, has also been proposed that Thai teachers can be sent to China to teach young Chinese students Thai language.

Approximately 800 000 Thai students are studying Chinese at the moment, but the number of teachers is very limited. Newsstop




dateiconApril 20, 2012



Four Billion Baht to Airports



Aero Thai, the state company that runs the air traffic control at airports in Thailand, including Suvarnabhumi Airport and Phuket International Airport, will spend four billion baht to upgrade the communications networks at these airports.

The upgrade will replace aging equipment and computer systems to protect against possible failure, caused by human error. Newsstop


Heat Wave in Northern Thailand



It's hot in northern Thailand right now. Really hot. Temperatures just above 40 degrees Celsius have been measured in Lampang and Nan. Unfortunately, this has led to a number of people have died. Newsstop




dateiconApril 19, 2012



Top 20 Nationals Visiting Thailand



The top 20 nations regarding the number of citizens visiting Thailand in 2011:

1. Malaysia - 2,470,686 people

2. China - 1,760,564 people

3. Japan - 1,126,221 people

4. Russia - 1,014,493 people

5. South Korea - 1,014,292 people

6. India - 916,787 people

7. Laos - 887,677 people

8. Australia - 854,064 people

9. Great Britain - 844,224 people

10. USA - 684,073 people

11. Singapore - 670,148 people

12. Germany - 603,177 people

13. Vietnam - 488,315 people

14. France - 509,225 people

15. Taiwan - 450,753 people

16. Hong Kong - 418,063 people

17. Indonesia - 369,530 people

18. Sweden - 336,593 people

19. Philippines - 271,903 people

20. Cambodia - 252,705 people

SOURCES: DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM + MINISTRY OF TOURISM AND SPORTS




dateiconApril 18, 2012



320 Killed During Week of Celebration



So far, 320 people have died in traffic accidents during the first week of Songkran celebrations in Thailand. 3320 people have been injured.

This means that 49 more people have been killed, compared with the same period last year. This despite the fact that the authorities have focused heavily on reducing accident rates.

Songkran is the traditional Thai New Year, but officially the New Year's Eve is on December 31. Newsstop


Songkran 2012 - Koh Samui
WATER MADNESS ON SAMUI 2012 - Photo by: Jens W, Yenit.com




dateiconApril 8, 2012



Did You Know This about Thailand?



- Thailand is currently the world's largest exporter of rice.

- There are about 6500 7-Eleven stores in Thailand (2012).

- There were 1,760,564 Chinese tourists in Thailand in 2011. There are more than twice as many as two years earlier.

- Officially, Thailand has the third lowest unemployment rate (0,7%).

- The energy drink Red Bull is originally a Thai 'invention'.

- Thailand is the only country in the region that has never been colonized.

- Bangkok is not called Bangkok in Thai, but Krung Thep Maha Nakhon (กรุงเทพมหานคร), or just Krung Thep.

- Thailand has a reigning Olympic gold medalist in boxing. Somjit Jongjohor in flyweight. He beat Cuban Andry Laffita in the final, with the score 8-2.

- The number of tourists arriving in Thailand has doubled in ten years.

- Thailand has two dog breeds "of their own". One is the Thai Bangkaew Dog and the other is the Thai Ridgeback Dog. Newsstop




dateiconApril 1, 2012



Explosion in Hat Yai was a Bomb



The authorities have now confirmed that the explosion in Hat Yai was caused by a car bomb. At least three people were killed, two men and a woman.

It has now been announced that the planned Songkran festivals in the province of Songkhla are canceled due to the incident. Newsstop




dateiconMarch 31, 2012



Multiple Bombings in South Thailand



Three bombs exploded at lunchtime in the southern province of Yala. The powerful explosions occurred about ten minutes apart. Nine people were killed and over fifty were injured and rushed to hospital.

Islamic separatists are suspected to be behind the attacks. They have regularly carried out attacks near the Malaysian border, since 2004. The victims have been both Buddhists and Muslims.

At least three people died and about 350 were injured when an explosion occurred in the basement of Lee Gardens Plaza Hotel in Hat Yai. The shocking incident occurred during the early afternoon and sparked a fire. Hotel guests were evacuated and many of these were taken to nearby hospitals. Also an overhead McDonald's restaurant was damaged and filled with smoke.

The police stated that they don't know yet if this is a bomb or a gas explosion accident. Some reports in the media claims that it might be a car bomb, but this is not officially confirmed yet.

Our thoughts: We are thinking of all those affected by these tragic events. One must not forget the people in southern Thailand who each day risk to be affected by this relentless and brutal violence. Newsstop




dateiconMarch 29, 2012



Our Hotel Tip: Relaxed in Koh Samui



Viva Vacation Resort is a beautiful, well-managed and family owned resort situated on the west coast of Koh Samui. The resort includes eleven air-conditioned villas with tasteful furnishings. The villas are surrounded by a beautifully tended garden. The present rate is about 60-65 euros a night, which has to be considered very affordable compared to what you get.

Keep in mind that Lipa Noi is a peaceful and relatively quiet part of Samui and it takes a half hour taxi ride to Chaweng and its shopping, nightlife and restaurants.

The resort has a swimming pool, wireless internet, table tennis, a restaurant and traditional Thai massage is also available at the resort. As usual, we have chosen a resort that has received excellent reviews in our booking system and also in comparison sites such as TripAdvisor. Newsstop

  Read more or book Viva Vacation Resort


Swede Requested for Extradition



Thai authorities suspect a doctor from Sweden of repeated sex crimes against children. According to reports, the abuses have been committed in the vicinity of Pattaya, from 2007 onwards.

The doctor was arrested in the Czech capital Prague, and he is now under arrest awaiting possible extradition. Several other Swedish men are suspected of involvement in sex crimes against a number of children, including a ten year old boy. Newsstop




dateiconMarch 28, 2012



Two Serious Traffic Accidents Today



At least seven people, including six illegal migrant workers from Myanmar, were killed in a car accident on Wednesday. Their pickup truck plunged into a canal when they tried to evade a police check. The accident occurred in Ban Phreak in the Ayutthaya province, about 75 kilometers north of Bangkok.

Another terrible accident involving 18 cars occurred in the province of Saraburi. Three people were killed and about twenty injured when a truck lost its trailer and several cars slammed into this. Newsstop




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Thailand news blog


dateiconMarch 20, 2012



Beware of Heat Stroke in Thailand



The Public Health Ministry warns elderly people, children, obese people and those with chronic diseases risk heat stroke when the temperature goes up in Thailand.

Symptoms of heat stroke include high body temperature, lack of sweating, dry skin and in severe cases even loss of consciousness. To prevent heat stroke, stay in the shade and drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration.

In severe cases, heat stroke can be fatal. Also many tourists suffer from this, especially those who spend the majority of the day in the sun, or those who exercise at daytime. Alcohol will worsen the health status of an already dehydrated person.

Our thoughts: I personally believe that the combination of alcohol and hot sun may be responsible for sudden death of some tourists (mostly older men) in their hotel room, after a day on the beach including alcohol consumption. Newsstop


Strong sun MIGHT be harmful
BEWARE OF TOO MUCH SUN - Photo by: Jens W, Yenit.com




dateiconMarch 19, 2012



One Million Thais have HIV or AIDS



The Public Health Ministry in Thailand reports that more than one million Thais have HIV or AIDS. Thailand's total population is nearly 67 million people, so about 1.5% of the population carries the virus. The spread of HIV are higher among so-called risk groups such as prostitutes and drug addicts, etc.

Health Minister Wittaya Buranasiri has stated that he wants to increase the budget to combat HIV, from the current three billion baht, to 3.5 billion baht.

Our thoughts: Although awareness of this disease has increased and the medications have become much more efficient, the disease is still a serious and a real problem in Thailand. Many teenagers risk their health through unprotected sex and the proportion of men who visit prostitutes are still high in the country. Newsstop




dateiconMarch 16, 2012



Man Forgot 8 Kilos of Gold in Taxi



A sixty-year-old jeweler forgot 8.2 kg of gold in a taxi in Bangkok three days ago! The cab driver returned the gold after the local media began reporting on the gold shop owner's somewhat unfathomable loss. The gold is worth more than 12 million baht!

The taxi driver claims that he drove around and looked for the jeweler for two days, but the police do not buy this story. However, he received a reward in gold, worth the equivalent of 200,000 baht. Newsstop


New Hotel Booking System Published



We have now published Thai.nu's new hotel booking pages with a series of changes (hopefully user friendly improvements). We hope you will appreciate the new service and that it will be easier to book hotels here and on our other websites about Thailand.

We will add even more features and Kristoffer (our eminent and tireless programmer) will continue with this work.

The rest of us have much more time to devote ourselves to update to expand and improve the content in our websites. Newsstop




dateiconMarch 10, 2012



Newspaper Owner Accused of Extortion



56-year-old Drew Noyes, publisher of Pattaya Times, is suspected of attempting to extort an Australian plastic surgeon of seven million baht. He alleged that the surgeon imported illegal drugs into Thailand and then he threatened to publish this information if he did not get the money.

Drew and his 29-year-old Thai wife were arrested when they went to collect an initial deposit of 100,000 baht.

Note: I have chosen to publish the suspect's name because he is to be regarded as a public figure. Normally I do not publish names of people not convicted. Newsstop


Sold Minors for Sex in Pattaya



A 61-year-old German citizen is suspected of having offered men sex with two underage girls, fourteen and seventeen years old. Reportedly, the customers paid 2.500 baht for the teenagers' sexual services. These crimes had taken place at a bar in east Pattaya.

Even the German's 34-year-old wife were arrested. The couple are now in custody awaiting trial. Newsstop

SOURCE: PATTAYA ONE




dateiconMarch 9, 2012



Hotel Fire Killed a Woman in Bangkok



A fire broke out on Thursday evening in a banquet room at Hotel Grand Mercure Park Avenue Bangkok, at Sukhumvit Soi 22.

A woman died from the smoke, and about twenty other people were injured, one man seriously. The majority of the injured guests are Russian citizens. Newsstop




dateiconMarch 8, 2012



Tried to Steal a 20-karat Diamond



Six Filipino citizens, aged 29-59, have been arrested at the shopping center of Siam Paragon in Bangkok, suspected of attempting to steal a 20-carat diamond, worth 2 million baht.

The gang are also suspected of previous (successful) thefts. Among other things, they have managed to steal gold rings valued at one million baht from a gold dealer in Yaowarat (in Chinatown). This theft was documented by a surveillance camera and this led to the staff of the gold shop in Siam Paragon recognized the thieves from a newspaper. The store staff called the police immediately, which led to the gang could be arrested.

In addition, those arrested are suspected of having collaborated with another gang that engaged in pick-pocketing at Bangkok's skytrain and subway. Newsstop


AIS will Start Testing 4G in Bangkok



The mobile operator AIS will shortly be testing Long Term Evolution (popularly known as 4G) in the capital Bangkok and the province of Maha Sarakham.

They will install base stations in the frequency ranges of 2300 and 1800 megahertz. At first, twenty base stations will be installed in Bangkok and eight in Maha Sarakham.

TOT and CAT are also expected to test 4G soon as they also are approved by the Office of the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC). Newsstop




dateiconMarch 5, 2012



The Dangerous Roads in Thailand



As you probably know, the traffic is very intense in Thailand and accidents are not rare.

A few years old research showed that approximately 70% of those injured or killed in traffic accidents are aged 10-39. The same survey shows that men are at 4-5 times greater risk of injury or death in road accidents than women. According to official statistics, 11.048 Thais were killed in the traffic in 2009. 113.048 people were seriously injured during the same year.

Unfortunately, but obviously, also foreign visitors are involved in accidents, both tourists and long term stayers. The most affected category are those who are renting motorcycles, especially in the southern tourist resorts in the country, such as Phuket, Koh Samui, Krabi and Pattaya.

It is understandable that many choose to hire a motorcycle, because taxis have become rather expensive in some places. Hiring a light motorcycle is only 150-200 baht per day. Moreover, the freedom factor of riding a bike is obvious. The problem is that many people who rent motorcycles are inexperienced motorcyclists in general and unfamiliar with the Thai traffic in particular.

You are ALWAYS taking a risk when you are hiring a motorbike in Thailand. The risk is obviously greater if you:

... are not used to Thai traffic and roads

... are driving fast

... have consumed alcohol

... are driving without a helmet

My suggestion is to really think before you rent a motorbike and if you have teenage children you should really consider if they really should take the risk! Because the risk is very much real, even for the one who is "careful". Newsstop

SOURCES: MINISTRY OF PUBLIC HEALTH AND ROYAL THAI POLICE


iPhones and iPads to Politicians?!



The House of Representatives of Thailand has decided to purchase iPads and iPhones to the parliamentarians. The estimated cost is about 50 million baht!

The opposition leader Abhisit Vejjajiva has expressed his opposition to the plan. He points out that each member already is receiving a computer.

Our thoughts: Why not a Segway too?




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A Few Words about me



My name is Jens and I was born in the early seventies in Södertälje, Sweden. I traveled for the first time to Thailand in 1989-1990 and already then started to have strong (positive) feelings for the country and it's people. During subsequent trips, it was mainly beach-life and Muay Thai training on the agenda but as time has gone by a strong interest regarding Thailand's history, community and culture has emerged within me. In early 2004, I moved here permanently.

My wife Rawadee is indirectly involved in the writing and contributes with knowledge, facts and inspiration. We try to alternate daily news from the country with our own reflections. The news and blog are illustrated with some photos, both my own and others. I hope you'll find the reading somewhat useful and I am of course open to your comments, suggestions and criticisms.

We are full-time geeks. Jens is working with web development, search engine optimization, graphic design and photography. Rawadee had a computer shop before, but is now also working with web development.


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