38 Thai evacuees leave Tripoli

The first group of Thai workers and students in war-torn Libya have left the capital, Tripoli, by land and are heading for the Tunisian city of Djerba.

  • Published: 1/08/2014 at 06:03 AM
  • Newspaper section: news

Sihasak: Says 3 Thais refused to leave

The 38 Thai nationals could be flown back home in time for the weekend.

Russ Jalichandra, Foreign Ministry deputy spokesman, said the Thai embassy in Jakarta had received an assurance from the Libyan embassy there that officials at the border have been instructed to give exit visas to all foreign workers wishing to leave.

The Indonesian Foreign Ministry has also informed the Thai embassy there that workers have been able to leave without problems.

Earlier, the evacuation of 1,500 Thais from Libya was expected to suffer delays after they were unable to get exit visas due to the Eid al-Fitr holiday.

The Foreign Ministry still has not received an official reply about this from the Libyan government but the embassy in Jakarta assured them Thais leaving the country would not face any problems.

Foreign Ministry permanent secretary Sihasak Phuangketkeow said yesterday the Thai ambassador to Libya confirmed that 30 workers and eight students had moved out of Tripoli by land to Djerba.

Three other students on the evacuation list refused to leave Tripoli, citing concerns for their studies, though officials had urged them to evacuate, he said.

Department of Consular Affairs director-general Thongchai Chasawath said a commercial plane would transport the Thais out of Tunisia, adding the plane could be chartered.

The evacuees may have to transfer to a Thai Airways flight in Dubai, as contact with the airline was ongoing, he said.

National Council for Peace and Order deputy chief Thanasak Patimaprakorn said yesterday three operation centres for evacuations have been prepared at the Foreign Ministry, in Djerba and Tunisia's capital city of Tunis.

About 70 other Thais in Benghazi have also been prepared for evacuation by sea, pending permission to transport them safely, he said.

Meanwhile, the Thai embassy in Israel reported yesterday that 82 Thai workers had been moved further away from Gaza, while 21 had decided to stay put.

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