3,000 Foreign Teachers To Enter Thailand Amid Pandemic

A Thai returnee arrives at Suvarnabhumi Airport on April 16, 2020.
A Thai returnee arrives at Suvarnabhumi Airport on April 16, 2020.

BANGKOK — The government on Monday said more than 3,000 foreign teachers have registered to enter Thailand following the move to ease coronavirus travel restrictions.

Most of the teachers will fly in from the Philippines, where more than 120,000 cases of coronavirus infection have been recorded, though an official said a strict screening measure will be in place for the arrivals, and the public should not panic over the news.

“They are both the teachers who had previously taught in Thailand but unable to return to Thailand, and newly employed teachers,” Attapon Truektrong, sec-gen of the Private Education Commission, said.

“Please be rest assured that although the outbreak situation in the Philippines is severe, everyone will be thoroughly screened,” he said.

Thai embassy officials in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia also tested positive for the virus, foreign ministry spokesman Cherdkiat Atthakor said.

The embassy in Manama will be closed for consular services until Aug. 22, while the embassy in Riyadh will open for those who have prior appointments only, he added.

No new cases of infection were reported in Thailand on Monday, according to the government’s pandemic task force.

The country’s cumulative cases of infection now stands at 3,351. Reports say 133 patients are still being treated at hospitals, while 3,160 have been discharged.

Correction: An earlier version of this article misstated that 3,351 coronavirus patients have been discharged from hospital. The correct number is 3,160. It also misstated the number of confirmed coronavirus infections in the Philippines as 200,000, whereas the published figure is approximately 120,000 as of Aug. 9.