(BANGKOK) LATEST: Thai police have charged a 27-year-old man in connection with the death of a Swiss woman who was found near a waterfall on the resort island of Phuket last week #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Aug.10: Local officials identified the victim as Nicole Sauvain-Weisskopf, aged 57: Police found her face down in the water covered by a black sheet, with her phone, shorts and trainers nearby: Theerawut Tortip told reporters at a police press conference that he killed the woman and stole from her: I would like to apologise to the family of the tourist and plead for all Thais to forgive me,” he said.

#AceDailyNews says that a Thai man has been charged over death of Swiss tourist near waterfall and her death came just weeks after Thailand launched its so-called “Phuket Sandbox” scheme. She reportedly arrived in Thailand on 13 July according to Reuters …..

By Ayeshea Perera
BBC News

Tourists on a beach in Phuket, Thailand
Reuters: Thai authorities have just recently allowed tourists to return to the island under its “Phuket Sandbox” programme

He was detained after nearby CCTV footage showed him travelling to the waterfall around the same time Ms Sauvain-Weisskopf went there, police said.

Under the programme, vaccinated tourists can come to the island without the need to quarantine, but cannot travel to the mainland within 14 days.

Ms Sauvain-Weisskopf’s death has prompted local officials to step up security on the island amid concerns that it is a huge setback to the sandbox scheme. 

Governor Narong Woonciew said officials would survey unsafe areas in each community and put them under surveillance.

A spokesman for Thailand’s foreign minister Don Pramudwinai said on Twitter he had sent his condolences to the Swiss ambassador for the “murder of a Swiss woman in Phuket”. 

And government spokesman Anucha Burapachaisri said that Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha had ordered police “to expedite the investigation to identify and arrest the culprit”.

He also ordered officials to increase security in Phuket. 

Switzerland’s foreign ministry meanwhile released a statement on Thursday saying Thai authorities had contacted them about the death of an “apparent Swiss citizen” but gave no more details, citing privacy concerns.

Local reports have said she was a Swiss diplomat, although officials have not yet commented on her job.

Before the pandemic, tourism accounted for about one-fifth of the Thai economy. 

#AceNewsDesk report ……Published: Aug.10: 2021:

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` Thailand’s Ruling Military Impose Curfew to Restore Investors Confidence ‘

#AceWorldNews – BANGKOK – June 04 – Thailand’s ruling military council on Tuesday lifted a curfew in some tourist areas, including the popular beach resorts of Pattaya and Phuket.

(The military imposed a nationwide curfew, currently running from midnight to 4am, after it seized power in a coup on May 22, Reuters reported)

It will be lifted in Pattaya, Chonburi, Samui, Surat Thani and Phuket “to counter any impact it may have on the tourism industry,” the council said in a televised statement.

It failed to mention the capital, Bangkok, in the measure.

After it seized power, the army detained senior politicians for days, saying stability had to be restored.

Small demonstrations against the coup have taken place almost daily in Bangkok, despite the heavy military presence in the city.

(VOA) Thailand’s military is threatening to arrest those using a three-fingered salute from “The Hunger Games” movies to express opposition to last month’s coup.

Coup leaders have severely restricted freedom of expression and enforced a ban on gatherings of more than five people since taking power on May 22.

Last week army chief Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha announced that elections would not be held for more than a year, to allow time for political reconciliation and reform.

(BBC) – But Thailand’s economy remains a concern, with military ready to cut tourist trade.

Senior military officials have said that the priorities of the ruling council include restoring the confidence of investors and maintaining fiscal discipline.

BBC News – VOA – Reuters

#ANS2014 

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#bangkok, #ko-samui, #pattaya, #phuket, #phuket-province, #prayuth-chan-ocha, #surat-thani, #thailand