Border police get B20m facility

Border police get B20m facility

Forces train at the 20-million-baht training centre, funded by the United States, in Chiang Mai. Photo BY ROYAL THAI ARMY
Forces train at the 20-million-baht training centre, funded by the United States, in Chiang Mai. Photo BY ROYAL THAI ARMY

The United States has opened a 20-million-baht training centre in Chiang Mai focused on close quarter battle (CQB) tactics and operations.

Led by Pol Maj Gen Varayuth Sukhawat, the deputy commissioner of the Thai Border Patrol Police (BPP), and US embassy Chargé d'Affaires Michael Heath, officials from both countries attended the unveiling of US-funded enhancements to the training facility for the BPP in Chiang Mai's Mae Taeng district yesterday.

This upgraded facility will help ensure law enforcement authorities can better protect communities in Thailand and across the region from transnational crime, officials said.

The US$600,000 (19.8 million baht) facility includes shooting ranges, a mock village, a three-storey tactical training building and equipment. The US Indo-Pacific Command's Joint Interagency Task Force West (JIATF West) is funding the project.

The BPP will use the updated facility, new equipment and closed-circuit digital recording system to conduct training scenarios in a variety of environments; it will also review and analyse footage of training for future improvements.

The US's overall $1.2-million contribution to the BPP in northern Thailand includes support for this facility as well as upcoming training programmes.

At yesterday's event, Mr Heath highlighted the breadth and depth of the US-Thai partnership and underscored their security collaboration.

"Our longstanding law enforcement cooperation combats transnational crime, including illicit trafficking of people, narcotics and wildlife, helping to keep people in both our countries and the region safe," he said.

"US support for this facility, which will enhance the BBP's ability to counter illicit transborder activity," said Rear Admiral Charles Fosse, director of JIATF West, "demonstrates our commitment to our partner and ally, Thailand."

Pol Maj Gen Varayuth added, "I am grateful to our US partners for your long-term support and continued collaboration."

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