NAKHON PHANOM: A picture on social media has convinced a couple in Pla Pak district of this northeastern border province that their son is one of the workers said to have been captured by the Hamas militant forces that launched a major assault on Israel on Saturday.
A picture posted by an online news outlet and widely shared on social media shows six men, their hands tied behind their backs, with a militant training a rifle at them. Those captured were said to be Thai and Philippine workers at a worksite on the Israeli border.
The couple – Thawatchai and Thongkhoon Onkeaw, both 47 – confirmed that one of the workers held captive by the Hamas is their son – Natthaporn Onkeaw, alias Tui, 26.
The family lives in Ban Nong Saeng, Moo 5 village, in tambon Na Ma Khua, Pla Pak district.
They said Mr Natthaporn left for Israel to work on a kibbutz in Israel in October 2021 after obtaining a work contract via the Labour Ministry's Department of Employment and paid about 60,000 baht in total in travel and administrative costs. Under the five-year contract, he was guaranteed a monthly salary of about 50,000 baht.
Ms Thongkhoon said the family had been in contact on a daily basis with their son after work via Facebook. But on Saturday, after the news on the Hamas attack broke out, they tried to contact him, but to no avail. They were also unable to contact any of his fellow Thai workers at the kibbutz.
After seeing the picture, they were certain one of them was Mr Natthaporn, she said.
Ms Thongkhoon said the family has one son, Mr Natthaporn, and a daughter, 12. She said her son had been the family's main breadwinner, following the footsteps of his father who also worked in Israel for several years.