PRIME MINISTER Srettha Thavisin this afternoon (Oct. 23) urged Thai workers in Israel to return home after finding out that many of them had changed their mind after their employers lured them to stay back by increasing their pay, Amarin TV said.
Speaking after a meeting at the Foreign Ministry Srettha said so far of the approximately 8,500 Thai workers in Israel who want to return around 3,000 had done so. Arrangements have been made to fly back around 800 workers a day and this could be further increased.
However a problem has arisen in that quite a lot of workers have changed their mind and no longer want to return.
This is mainly because their employers had increased their pay and put off paying their salary from Oct. 31 to Nov. 10 to lure them to stay on.
However at today’s meeting all parties, including representatives from security units, the military and Foreign Ministry, agreed that while reports indicate Israel-Hamas fighting had subsided this has not actually happened with this war likely to escalate and possibly spread to neighbouring countries.
“This is really worrying, it is something we’re sure will get worse with the ground warfare not having started yet but there is news it is going to be launched in two to three days’ time.
“I would like to warn Thais to return, relatives in Thailand please tell your family members to come back. Do come back, right now there is opportunity to do so, once the ground war starts it will be more difficult both in terms of going to the evacuation centre and the airport,” he said.
Agriculture and Cooperatives Minister Thammanat Prompao said that most of the Thai workers in Israel are farmers who use high technology and there is a need for workers with these skills.
There are jobs for all those who return and this is manageable if up to 1,000 return per day, he added.
Srettha also said that currently 19 Thai workers are being held hostage with their fate unknown but every channel is being used to get them released.
An image of Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin on a background of warfare. Top photo: Matichon, Front Page photo: Amarin TV