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Putin to attend Apec summit

BANGKOK: Russian President Vladimir Putin has accepted Thailand’s invitation to attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) summit in Bangkok next month, according to a security source.

By Bangkok Post

Wednesday 12 October 2022, 10:01AM

Photo: AFP

Photo: AFP

The source said the Foreign Ministry has already informed security agencies to prepare security arrangements for the Nov 18-19 meeting, reports the Bangkok Post.

US President Joe Biden will send a representative on his behalf while Chinese President Xi Jinping’s attendance is still pending confirmation, the source said.

Speaking after chairing yesterday’s (Oct 11) meeting of armed forces leaders and the national police chief to discuss security measures for the Apec summit, Gen Chalermpol Srisawasdi, chief of the defence forces, said the situation is under control and there are no signs of unrest.

“Security agencies have been closely monitoring groups that may instigate unrest but there have been no reports of any suspicious activities so far,” Gen Chalermpol said.

“Security will be tightened once aircraft carrying foreign leaders and other attendees enter Thailand’s airspace,” he added.

The armed forces and Royal Thai Police will ensure maximum security for foreign leaders and attendees during the Apec meeting, Gen Chalermpol said.

Another source said security agencies are keeping a close watch on separatist groups in the southern border provinces to prevent them from coming to the capital to disrupt the meeting.

In the Foreign Ministry’s Line group application, spokesman Tanee Sangrat posted yesterday that nine “economies” have responded positively to the invitation to attend, mostly in writing.

“Eight more are likely to attend. I cannot name [them] at this time. There will be two to three countries that will join as special guests of the host. As a courtesy, I cannot name the countries.

“There will be one international organisation which will attend the leaders’ retreat [meeting] and one that will attend the ministerial meeting,” he wrote.

Foreign Affairs Minister Don Pramudwinai said several countries have accepted invitations, but it remains to be seen whether their leaders will attend in person or send representatives.

Asked about Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz al-Saud’s planned visit to Thailand, Mr Don said the Crown Prince will visit as a guest of the government, and this will open the door for new opportunities for the two countries and further boost bilateral ties and cooperation.

Frozen ties thawed when Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha visited Saudi Arabia on Jan 25 at the invitation of the Crown Prince, the country’s de facto leader. He also serves as deputy prime minister and defence minister.

He will reportedly lead a delegation of 800 Saudi dignitaries and businessmen to Thailand.

Deputy Bangkok governor Chakkaphan Phew-ngam said measures will be put in place to ensure security and regulate traffic flow during the Apec meeting, with CCTV and video conference systems to be installed to support the measures.

Deputy government spokeswoman Traisuree Taisaranakul said yesterday that the Cabinet had approved a ministerial regulation that will allow the Treasury Department to issue up to one million commemorative 20-baht coins to mark Thailand’s hosting of the Apec summit.

The government has declared Nov 16-18 as public holidays in Bangkok, Nonthaburi and Samut Prakan during the Apec meeting.

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Kurt | 14 October 2022 - 10:42:08

@Fascinated, sometimes it feels that leading Thai Officials think that doing once in a while a bit Merit here and there is enough show of  morality and ethics.

Kurt | 14 October 2022 - 10:34:07

 As courtecy Spokesman Tanee disn't, Min Don mentioned Saudi. So: nr 1 Saudi Arabia, 2 China ( concentration camps with 1.5 million), 3 Russia ( crimes against humanity/war crimes). All 3 non democratic countries. Strange to lable countries as "economies", while peace, stability/feeding the millions of almost starving people should have priority.

JohnC | 13 October 2022 - 09:55:53

So eventhough most Russians can't come here or go anywhere else because of sanctions from Putin's war, the megalomaniac dictator who caused it all is invited to attend by the Thai PM??? I guess democracy and human rights mean nothing to him just like the PoS he is playing along with. I hope the Thai people hold massive protests over this severe breach of etiquette.

Fascinated | 12 October 2022 - 19:14:11

Putin and MBS- just thugs but hey, think of the tourist dollars. All about the money, not ethics and morality.


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