Sattahip family mourns death of Thai sailor who died of malaria during Darfur peacekeeping mission

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Family members are mourning the death of a Sattahip-based Thai sailor who died of malaria while on an international mission in Sudan.

Petty Officer 1st Class Pipatpoom Srikadkao died Aug. 17 in the Darfur region where 800 Thai troops were working in the joint African Union/United Nations Hybrid Operation. Pipatpoom had telephoned his wife, Nathakmol, only days before saying he was in the hospital suffering from the flu.

The Royal Thai Navy posthumously promoted Pipatpoom to lieutenant commander and will compensate the family with 2.3 million baht. He is survived by two daughters, ages 1 and 4 months, and parents Prayong and Khumsaenkhod Srikhudkhao in the northeast province of Kalasin

Petty Officer 1st Class Pipatpoom Srikadkao, posthumously promoted to lieutenant commander. Petty Officer 1st Class Pipatpoom Srikadkao, posthumously promoted to lieutenant commander.

The United Nations has arranged for Pipatpoom’s body to be transferred to Thailand within a couple of days. The Navy said it will also undertake additional precautions for troops still serving in Africa.

Thailand’s Army chief planned to send the second contingent from the Thai armed forces to Sudan on a humanitarian mission on Aug. 19 as the first batch of Thai troops have completed their mission and are gradually returning home.

Gen Theerawat Boonyapradap, deputy commander-in-chief, chaired the teleconference with Col Narong Suankaew, commander of the Thai-Darfur Task Force 980 in Sudan, who is ready to hand over the task to Lt Col Narongrit Panikabutr who led the second unit of Thai soldiers to take over the mission on Aug 22.

The Thai-Darfur Task Force 980 left Thailand for Sudan on Dec. 4 on a mission to join UNAMID. Thai troops were tasked with conducting patrols, providing protection to civilians, UN facilities, convoys and the UN and other humanitarian workers, as well as providing medical service. Their assignments will complement the peace process in Darfur.

The family mourns the passing of husband and father. The family mourns the passing of husband and father.

Gen Prayuth Chanocha, the army chief presided over the send-off ceremony of the second batch of 812 soldiers at the 11th Infantry Division Aug 19.  The first batch of 203 Thai soldiers moved from Mukjar to Nyala to prepare for the trip home Aug 20-21 while the rest of troops will return later after the second batch is oriented and learns to carry on the mission.