Pattaya Tourist Police seeking to blunt damage to tourism from foreign government warnings of a possible terrorist attack in Thailand are asserting the city is “completely safe” from attack.
Tourist Police superintendent Lt. Col. Arun Promphan said Jan. 17 there was “no reason to believe there will be any terrorism dangers in Thailand.” He said Pattaya was not named in any warnings, but a number of local tourists “panicked” after listening to what he called “one-sided material” from the foreign embassies.
Pattaya’s tourist police chief says there is nothing to worry about; our beaches are safe from terrorist attacks.
Arun’s assertion comes after warnings issued by the United States and 16 other nations and the arrest of a Lebanese man linked to terrorist organization Hezbollah in Bangkok earlier this month. With Thai police now seeking a second terror suspect, the U.S. and other countries have maintained their warnings that their citizens exercise caution when visiting public areas where large groups of Western tourists gather in Bangkok.
Echoing comments by top Thai government officials, Arun says that the U.S.’s refusal to drop its warning after the arrest of Atris Hussein Jan. 13 is damaging the country’s tourism industry.
Arun said tourist police nationally are trying to reassure tourists about safety by stringently checking groups of foreigners entering the country who raise suspicions that they may not be in the kingdom for vacation.
In Pattaya, he said, the tourist police are working with Chonburi provincial officers to patrol popular areas. Forty full-time officers, 170 police volunteers and 30 foreign police volunteers have been deployed.
“With this in mind, it can be affirmed that the threat of terrorist attacks in Pattaya is not something to be concerned or panicked about,” Arun said. “Pattaya City is completely safe from terrorist attacks.”
However, in case anyone suspects something is amiss, they can contact Pattaya Police at 1555, he said.