THE PAVILIONS PHUKET BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, PHUKET Kata Rocks
Login | Create Account Poll Currency Weather Facebook Youtube Search

New Year mayhem as hundreds do battle in Phuket Airport work camp

PHUKET: Tha Chat Chai police are investigating a battle involving hundreds of people that broke out on New Year's Day (January 1) in the huge camp for labourers working on the Phuket International Airport expansion.

constructioncrimepolice
By Eakkapop Thongtub

Saturday 3 January 2015, 04:31PM


By today, everything was once again quiet at the work camp.

By today, everything was once again quiet at the work camp.

The battle between Burmese and Cambodian labourers working for main contractor Sino-Thai Engineering and Construction Co Ltd, led to a fire in worker accommodation that destroyed seven rooms.

Troops are now patrolling the area and the company has been ordered to organise new accommodation with the 400-500 Cambodian and 370 Burmese workers housed well away from one another.

A person living nearby told The Phuket News that there are around 2,000 workers in the camp, including some 1,000 Thais, who apparently were not involved in the fighting.

He added that many of the Burmese are teenagers and get drunk often, while the Cambodians live more as family units.

There had already been a fight on Tuesday (December 30), with some minor injuries, but not on the scale of the New Year’s Day battle, an alcohol-fueled riot that lasted for two hours before police and troops were able to stop it.

The cause of the fighting is not clear, but each side has apparently harboured a simmering resentment of the other for a long time.

Casualties were surprisingly light, with the only significant injury being to a Cambodian worker who was hit in the eye with a stone from a slingshot.

Splash Beach Club

The battle came to a swift end with combatants fleeing in all directions when 15 police and 10 army troops, all armed, entered the area.

Several men, believed to have been at the centre of the fighting, were arrested and another 60 – 30 from each side – were rounded up and initially slated for deportation.

Later, however, it was decided that the company could do what it wanted with the 60, so long as they were not sent back into the Phuket Airport work camp. They will be scattered instead around other Sino-Thai sites in Thailand.

Pol Col Somchai Sanprasert, Superintendent of Tha Chat Chai Police, noted that 120 Burmese have already been moved to alternative accommodation in Muang Mai, while another 250 or so remain in the same place as before, but now separated from the Cambodians by a new fence and gate.

But some of the Cambodian workers were today still scared to go back into their accommodation, preferring instead to camp in nearby rubber plantations.

Troops are still in the area, carrying out armed patrols to keep the peace.

Sino-Thai has suffered from labour shortages on the B5.1-billion project which started in October 2012 and is scheduled to be finished in May this year, failing which it faces penalties to late completion.

 

 

Comment on this story

* Please login to comment. If you do not have an account please register below by simply entering a username, password and email address. You can still leave your comment below at the same time.

Comments Here:
Comments Left:
# Characters
Username:
Password:
E-mail:
Security:

Be the first to comment.

Have a news tip-off? Click here

 

Phuket community
Tour boats blamed for widespread reef damage

Timo hit the nail on the head, and all the warnings of environmental degradation continuously fall o...(Read More)


Chinese Consul General meets Phuket Governor to discuss tourist safety

"“I am very happy to hear that the Thai government has made the safety of Chinese tourists a ...(Read More)


Governor pushes water-shortage solutions

"“We will not charge residents any costs for emergency water provdied,” the governor assure...(Read More)


Welcoming HMAS Canberra: Australian Navy head to Phuket for training and community activities

"Pascale one wonders why the cereal(sic) is allowed. Emails to the Editor get no reply. I think...(Read More)


Welcoming HMAS Canberra: Australian Navy head to Phuket for training and community activities

"talking is so much easier.Always the same," hope to see you there, getting your hands dir...(Read More)


Army starts rolling in emergency water supply to Phuket

"Col Santi explained, “Lt Gen Pornsak learned that local residents in Phuket were now in trou...(Read More)


Hunted seastead couple ‘traced to Tarutao’

Fake news by thai authorities. The US-Thai couple didn't build, tugged, and anchored the floati...(Read More)


Army starts rolling in emergency water supply to Phuket

I thought the Gov said there was NO drought so why is the Army turning up with water tankers. Don...(Read More)


Army starts rolling in emergency water supply to Phuket

Finally army has taken over from a governor who still denies there is a water crisis on Phuket. Besi...(Read More)


Mains water supply outage announced

Interesting mental output at 5.16. Fascinating with all those dots and half finished sentences,but w...(Read More)