Asean diplomats in US air concerns over race attacks

Asean diplomats in US air concerns over race attacks

The Thai embassy has joined the Asean diplomatic community in Washington in raising concerns over racial attacks on Asians and ethnic Asian Americans in the United States.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Tanee Sangrat said on Monday the Thai embassy in Washington has been monitoring the attacks.

The embassy has acknowledged the negative effects the issue is having on Thais living in the country.

The Asean Committee in Washington (ACW), of which the Thai embassy forms a part, has conveyed a collective concern over the attacks to the US government.

The Malaysian ambassador, who chairs the ACW, has written to the US Secretary of State Antony Blinken to highlight the concerns.

The US Secretary of State on April 6 replied to the ACW letter, explaining the US administration under the leadership of President Joe Biden and Mr Blinken recognised the importance of the racial issue.

President Biden has signed a Presidential Memorandum repudiating racism against Asians, Asian Americans and the Pacific islanders. The president also declared an initiative by the US Justice Department to promote the role of communities in fighting hate crimes against Asians and Asian Americans.

Mr Tanee said the ministry and the Thai embassy in Washington will keep track of the incidents.

The ministry stands ready to support Thai citizens and Thai communities in the US.

In February, Vicha Ratanapakdee, 84-year-old Thai immigrant in San Francisco, died after being shoved to the ground during his morning walk. He died of a brain haemorrhage in a local hospital two days after the attack. The attack is thought to have been racially motivated.

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