Thais and Malaysians not allowed to cross borders, all traveling restricted to contain COVID-19


NARATHIWAT – The emergency operations center, in the border district of Su-Ngai Kolok in Narathiwat Province, is working with the Immigration Department of Malaysia to block Thai workers from crossing the border in either direction, as both countries are scrambling to contain the spread of COVID-19.

At the time of this report, Malaysia has 1,624 confirmed cases with 16 deaths.

Previously, the Thai embassy in Malaysia issued an order mandating that Thai laborers wishing to return home obtain a medical certificate, clearing them of COVID-19, and a letter from the embassy authorizing their trip home, before flying back to Thailand.

The Narathiwat Provincial Administration last week imposed a travel restriction, preventing people, transport and cargo from passing through all temporary or permanent Thai-Malaysian border checkpoints.

To further strengthen the preventive measures against the disease, the provincial government asked the Immigration Department of Malaysia not to allow Thais to travel to Thailand until the epidemic situation improves.

Initially, the Malaysian authorities agreed to the request and will also waive fines for Thais who have to remain in the country beyond their visa expiry. All Thai nationals can contact the Thai embassy for assistance. (NNT)