Army confirms US training plans shelved after Covid outbreak

Army confirms US training plans shelved after Covid outbreak

Military personnel among 151 members of the RTA Combat Team go through a health check at Suvarnabhumi airport on their return from Lightning Forge 2020, a training exercise in Hawaii, on July 21, 2010. (Photo by Wichan Charoenkiatpakul)
Military personnel among 151 members of the RTA Combat Team go through a health check at Suvarnabhumi airport on their return from Lightning Forge 2020, a training exercise in Hawaii, on July 21, 2010. (Photo by Wichan Charoenkiatpakul)

The Defence Ministry has confirmed that Thailand has suspended plans for the army to undertake joint training with the US military after nine Thai soldiers tested positive for coronavirus upon returning from Hawaii.

The Royal Thai Army said the infected soldiers were among 151 Thai officers who had returned from Lightning Forge 2020 training with US soldiers in Hawaii for the first three weeks of July.

"The army has suspended all plans to bring forces abroad until the situation improves," ?inistry spokesman Lt Gen Kongcheep Tantawanich said on Sunday. 

Thailand had no plans for joint training with other countries but the United States, he said.

Nattapon Srisawat, the head of the Thai Army's anti-Covid-19 unit, told Reuters the army had to exercise caution. "It will be difficult to travel at the moment as we have to be careful," he said.

Thailand has reported 3,317 cases and 58 deaths. Recent infections were imported from abroad, marking 69 successive days without any domestic transmission.



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