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Thailand announces nationwide curfew from Friday to curb Covid-19 pandemic

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14:24 | 03/04/2020

Thailand will announce a nationwide curfew between 10pm to 4am as of April 3 in a move to constrain the spread of the new coronavirus, Reuters cited a statement of the government. 

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The curfew will have some exceptions, including for people who work in medicine, banking, and delivery of consumable goods, crops, medicine, medical supplies and equipment, newspapers, and gas; people who work shifts; people who are travelling to and from an airport; and people with permission from their district officials.

The announcement was made amid the Covid-19 infection cases in Thailand continues to rise as the country recorded 104 new confirmed cases of the disease on April 2, bringing its total to 1,875.

Bangkok is a local hot spot, with over 1,000 confirmed cases in the capital and its vicinity. The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration has ordered closures of many businesses including shopping malls, hair salons, golf courses, and restaurants except for take-aways. Other provinces have applied similar measures. Nevertheless, the virus has continued to spread.

There have been scattered reports of young people dining and drinking in parks and on beaches, since many restaurants and bars are shuttered. The curfew is ostensibly aimed at putting a stop to such gatherings, according to Nikkei Asian Review.

Thaveesilp Wissanuyothin, spokesman of the Center for Covid-19 Situation Administration, says that PM Prayut Chan-ocha has ordered the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to issue a new directive prohibiting any new arrivals until at least April 15, Thethaiger reported.

Thaveesilp says Thais returning from overseas and foreign visitors are partly responsible for the continuing rise in the number of new infections.

“Though the number of travellers from overseas has significantly declined, the PM believes more needs to be done to stem overseas arrivals in order to further flatten the curve,” he said.

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