One Thai killed, eight injured, another 11 held hostage in Gaza violence

09 Oct 2023 05:20pm
Palestinians inspect the damage following an Israeli airstrike on the Sousi mosque in Gaza City on Oct 9. (Photo by Mahmud HAMS / AFP)
Palestinians inspect the damage following an Israeli airstrike on the Sousi mosque in Gaza City on Oct 9. (Photo by Mahmud HAMS / AFP)

BANGKOK - A Thai national was killed, eight were injured and another 11 were among those being held hostage by Hamas during attacks on Israel.

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Parnpree Bahiddha-Nukara said Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin has been following developments closely and instructed the Royal Thai Embassy in Tel Aviv to provide real-time updates, coordinate with the relevant authorities in Israel, and be in contact with Thai nationals.

"At present, the embassy is coordinating with authorities in Israel to confirm the following information on Thai nationals in Israel, which is one fatality, eight injured, and eleven people captured.

"The government prioritises protecting Thai nationals.

"The Thai government condemns violence in all forms, and calls for the cessation of violence and the immediate release of all innocent civilians,” he said at a press conference here today.

He urged the media to cooperate and not to publish the names of the affected Thai nationals, as the situation continues to unfold and information is still being verified by the authorities on the ground.

Parnpree said the Prime Minister has issued an order for the Royal Thai Air Force to be on standby for immediate evacuation of Thai nationals from Israel by air, as needed.

Meanwhile, Thai Ambassador to Israel, Pannabha Chandraramya said clashes continued, particularly in the vicinity and around the Gaza Strip.

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She said the Israel Defence Forces have prohibited people from leaving their premises and from entering the affected areas until they have gained full control.

At present, she said Israel’s airspace is still open, but all inbound and outbound flights have to coordinate closely with air traffic control.

"The Royal Thai Embassy is actively following the situation and stands ready to assist in every way possible,” she said adding that the embassy is in constant contact with the authorities in Israel to verify the number of Thai fatalities, injured and captured.

She said a number of those injured have been transferred to hospital.

At present, there are approximately 30,000 Thai nationals in Israel, and approximately 5,000 are in the Gaza Strip.

Thai nationals, including students, in other areas remain safe.

Meanwhile, Srettha, who is currently on a five-day official visit to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) and three ASEAN countries-Brunei, Malaysia, and Singapore said that the Foreign Ministry and Royal Thai Air Force are working closely to evacuate Thai nationals as soon as the situation allows.

"A flight can accommodate 423 people,” he wrote on X after he touched down at HKSAR today.

Earlier, Srettha said he has ordered the Royal Air Force to prepare Airbus A340 and C-130 to carry out the operation.

He said he would use all diplomatic channels to secure the release of the innocent Thai victims, who have no involvement in the conflict.

According to international media at least 550 civilians from both sides were killed while over 3,000 others were injured in the counter attacks. - BERNAMA