The spread of COVID-19 has led to an increasing number of infected persons and many people have died. The Thai government has announced the closure of points of entry into the Kingdom to contain the spread of the disease.
It has also issued an announcement, granting automatic visa extensions for foreigners in Thailand who have been affected by the COVID-19 crisis.
The announcement was made on 7 April 2020 and signed by Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-o-cha and Interior Minister General Anupong Paojinda. It covers three groups of foreigners, as follows:
1. Foreigners with resident visas who normally reside in Thailand
The first group includes foreigners with resident visas who normally reside in Thailand but are now overseas and required to return to Thailand within a year of their departure.
Since they might not be able to re-enter Thailand in time due to the COVID-19 pandemic, they will be granted an extension of their compulsory return deadline. However, they are required to return to Thailand as soon as the situation improves within the period specified by the Immigration Bureau.
2. Foreign visitors whose visas expired on 26 March 2020 or thereafter
The second group involves foreign visitors whose visas expired on 26 March 2020 or thereafter. They will be granted automatic visa extensions until 30 April 2020, and notification of staying in the Kingdom will be extended for those whose expiry date of stay permit falls within the period between 26 March and 30 April 2020.
However, when the situation improves sufficiently or returns to normal, they are required to proceed with their visas within the period specified by the Immigration Bureau.
3. Visitors from neighboring countries who hold a temporary border pass
The third group includes visitors from neighboring countries who hold a temporary border pass issued on 23 March 2020, or thereafter. They will be allowed to stay in Thailand until the borders are re-opened, and will be required to leave Thailand within seven days after the borders reopen.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Public Health on 8 April 2020 reported 111 new COVID-19 cases in Thailand, raising the number of confirmed cases to 2,369. Out of the number of confirmed cases, 888 have been cured; 1,451 are still hospitalized; and 30 have died.
Abuse against women still prevalent in Thailand
Like many other Asian countries, Thailand is a patriarchal society in which women are generally tied to the role of family caretaker which usually means raising children and taking care of the elderly, as well as other household chores like cooking and cleaning.
In December 1999, the United Nations designated Nov 25 as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, to commemorate the murder of the Mirabal sisters, the three Dominican political activists who opposed the dictatorship of Rafael Trujillo in 1960.
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