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US issues travel alert for Thailand

A wounded Thai soldier, who later succumbed to his injuries and died, is carried on a stretcher after he and fellow soldiers on motorbikes approaching a security checkpoint were fired on by Thai security forces on the outskirts of Bangkok, Thailand, on Wednesday. Photo: AP.  

The US has called for peaceful resolution of the current political impasse in Thailand and issued a travel alert for American nationals for that country.

“Our message remains what it has been since this situation evolved, which is to peacefully resolve the situation,” said Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs P.J. Crowley.

Due to escalating violence in central Bangkok, demonstrations in Chiang Mai, and other incidents throughout Thailand, all US citizens should avoid non-essential travel to Thailand, the State Department said in a travel alert.

Noting that the United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (aka UDD or “red—shirts“) continues to demonstrate in central Bangkok, the State Department said the UDD may change or expand its demonstration locations at any time.

Observing that various other groups are engaging in pro—government or counter—demonstrations in Bangkok and Chiang Mai, the alert said there have been several minor clashes between the UDD and other demonstrators.

“Political demonstrations by the UDD are expected to continue in Bangkok indefinitely. As a result, traffic congestion and difficulty of movement is possible throughout Bangkok, and traffic patterns may change unexpectedly as demonstrators block roads,” it said.

“Other forms of transportation, such as the BTS Skytrain, may close unexpectedly in response to threats or incidents, such as occurred on April 27, when protesters jumped onto the tracks and tried to block the tracks with tyres,” the alert said.

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Printable version | Oct 30, 2020 11:36:04 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/US-issues-travel-alert-for-Thailand/article16373288.ece

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