Two more Thais dead in Israel
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Two more Thais dead in Israel

Two more Thai workers were confirmed killed in Israel on Wednesday, bringing the total number of Thais who have lost their lives in the conflict, which began on Oct 7, to 33, Foreign Affairs Minister Parnpree Bahiddha-Nukara said.

He said that 18 Thai workers had been injured as of yesterday, while 18 others had been taken as hostages by the fighters from the militant group Hamas -- not 19, as previously reported.

That said, an update released by the Israeli government on Wednesday and cited by Reuters showed out of the 220 people taken hostage by Hamas, 54 were Thais.

Citing information released by Israeli authorities, Mr Parnpree said the identities of 24 out of the 33 Thais killed in the conflict have been confirmed.

The government will strive to repatriate Thai workers who have registered to come back, the minister said, adding a team of negotiators has been dispatched to help secure the release of the hostages.

According to the ministry's data, a total of 547 Thais arrived back in Thailand from Israel yesterday.

It said 268 arrived on El Al flight LY085 and landed at Suvarnabhumi airport at 10.20am yesterday; 145 on a Royal Thai Air Force aircraft landed at Don Mueang airport at 11.50am; and 134 on Thai Lion Air flight SL7005, landed at Don Mueang airport at 2.50pm.

Meanwhile, the bodies of seven Thai workers killed in the conflict also arrived on El Al flight LY083, which landed at Suvarnabhumi airport at 10.35am yesterday.

Pairoj Chotikasathien, the Labour Ministry's permanent secretary, said so far 4,531 Thais have been repatriated from Israel on 27 flights.

Addressing the House of Representatives yesterday, Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin responded to inquiries about the government's plan to help Thais stuck in Israel.

He said that out of about 8,000 Thais who have registered for repatriation, more than half have been brought home.

Mr Srettha acknowledged the challenges faced by evacuation teams over the past four to five days, as many Israeli employers have begun to offer higher salaries as an incentive for Thai workers to remain in the country.

The prime minister urged the workers not to worry about their wages, as the government will find ways to help clear their debts.

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