Thailand extends state of emergency despite few COVID-19 infections

Bangkok, Sep 28 (efe-epa).- Thai authorities announced Monday an extension until Oct. 31 of the state of alarm decreed to combat COVID-19 despite the few infections in the country and amid a wave of protests students against the government.

This is the sixth extension of the measure announced since the start of the pandemic by the Center for the Management of the COVID-19 Situation (CCSA), which includes a number of experts and leaders, including the Prime Minister, Prayut Chan-ocha, and the Minister of Health, Anuntin Charnvirakul.

The extension must be approved by the government Tuesday, which in the past has justified the extensions on the grounds that it allows them to maintain control over people arriving from abroad.

The CCSA reported today 22 new imported cases of patients who are in quarantine, which brings the total number to 3,545, of which 117 are active, while the number of deaths remains at 59.

Thailand, the first country to register COVID-19 cases outside of China, completed 100 days on Sep. 2 without detecting any local contagion, but the streak was broken the next day with the detection of the virus in a prisoner who had just entered in jail and had not traveled abroad.

Since then, authorities have not detected any new local contagion again, although some Thais have tested positive for COVID-19 upon arrival in Japan.

In any case, Thailand has kept the epidemic under control without having decreed a strict confinement, although in the first months it limited movement and economic activity and still maintains strict control at its borders.

Authorities are preparing a plan to allow limited entry of foreign tourists in October, although they will have to undergo a 14-day guarded quarantine at selected hotels.



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