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Published on : Tuesday, November 26, 2013
Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra last night extended the enforcement of the Internal Security Act (ISA) in all districts of Bangkok and Nonthaburi, Bang Phli district of Samut Prakan and Lat Lum Kaeo district of Pathum Thani until 31 December to maintain law and order, and assured that the government would not use force against the protesters.
The law, which was enforced in only three districts of Bangkok – Dusit, Phra Nakhon and Pom Prap Sattru Phai – since 18 October, prohibits mass gathering in the ISA-invoked areas. While the law does not prohibit nor obstruct peaceful demonstration held within the bounds of the law, it enables security agencies – police, military and civilian – to effectively prevent and mitigate, as much as possible, undue disruption or impact on the safety of the general public.
As of today, the anti-government protesters are staging their protests at the Democracy Monument on Ratchadamnoen Klang Avenue, Nang Lerng Junction on Nakhonsawan-Phitsanulok Roads, the Ministry of Finance and the area outside the Government Public Relations Department on Rama VI Road and the area outside the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Si Ayutthaya Road. The marching of the protesters to other state agencies may cause heavy road traffic at certain times.
Meanwhile, the pro-government protesters are staging their campaign at Rajamangala Stadium on Ramkhamhaeng Road. The two main areas occupied by the anti- and pro-government groups are located some 22 kilometres apart.
The protest locations are not tourist attractions. All tourist attractions in Bangkok, such as, the Grand Place and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha on Na Phra Lan Road and Vimanmek Mansion on Rajvithi Road are open and operating as per normal. However, tourists are advised to check travel route and road traffic situation as well as avoid areas where crowds may gather. This is because there may be heavy road traffic at certain times and thus causing inconvenience.
Suvarnabhumi Airport has advised air travellers of possible heavy road traffic and a lack of taxis resulting from the protests in Bangkok. Commuters are advised to use public transport such as BTS SkyTrain, Airport Rail Link, public buses and vans, and limousine services. Air travellers are also advised to allocate more time before flight depart or at least three hours.
Life in Bangkok and all other areas of Thailand continues as per normal. Tourist attractions and activities as well as businesses in Bangkok and other provinces are not affected, and continue as usual as seen in these THAI LIVE CAM streaming cameras that present a number of stunning preset views of Thailand’s most famous and popular destinations including Chiang Mai, Ko Samui and Nong Khai.
Tourists need not be alarmed of the presence of security forces and checkpoints in Bangkok. Police are deployed to provide security in the city. Security has been stepped up to prevent ill-intentioned people from inciting violence. Traffic police are also stepping up efforts to ensure traffic flow in the city.
Thailand’s main gateway, Suvarnabhumi Airport, in Bangkok and all other international and domestic airports throughout the country are operating as per normal. Transportation to and from Suvarnabhumi and Don Mueang International Airports into central Bangkok as well as into tourist destinations southeast and southwest of Bangkok; such as, Pattaya, Hua Hin, Ko Samet and Ko Chang are operating as per normal. The State Railway of Thailand and the Transport Co., Ltd., (inter-provincial bus service) are operating as per normal.
International and domestic airlines are operating flights between Bangkok and Thai cities, as well as destinations around the world, as per normal.
Getting around Thailand
Bangkok, located 30 kilometres from Suvarnabhumi Airport or 30 minutes by car or 15 minutes by Airport Rail Link. Mass transit networks including BTS Skytrain, MRT Subway and city buses are operating as usual.
Chiang Mai, located 716 kilometres north of Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport or 7 hours 44 minutes by car or 1 hour 10 minutes by air.
Phuket, located 865 kilometres south of Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport or 9 hours 50 minutes by car or 1 hour 25 minutes by air.
Pattaya, located 120 kilometres southeast of Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport or 1 hour 17 minutes by car.
Hua Hin, located 227.5 kilometres southwest of Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport or 2 hours 40 minutes by car.
Ko Samui, located 804 kilometres southwest of Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport or 10 hours 34 minutes by car and ferry or 1 hour 5 minutes by air.
Khon Kaen, located 458 kilometres northeast of Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport or 5 hours by car or 55 minutes by air.
Nong Khai, located 630 kilometres northeast of Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport or 7 hours 5 minutes by car.
Useful contact numbers:
Tourism Authority of Thailand Call Centre 1672
Thai Traffic Police Call Centre 1197
Thai Tourist Police Call Centre 1155
Bangkok Tourism Division Call Centre +66 (0) 2225 7612-4
Bangkok Mass Transit Authority (city bus service) Call Centre 1348
State Railway of Thailand Call Centre 1690
Transport Co., Ltd., (inter-provincial bus service) Call Centre 1490
Airports of Thailand Call Centre 1722
Thai Airways International (THAI) Call Centre +66 (0) 2356 1111
Bangkok Airways Reservation Centre 1771
Nok Air Call Centre 1318