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Thai PM Prayut in self-isolation after close contact with businessman who later tested positive for COVID-19

Thai PM Prayut in self-isolation after close contact with businessman who later tested positive for COVID-19

Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha came to power in a 2014 coup. (File photo: AFP/Chalinee Thirasupa)

BANGKOK: Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha went into self-isolation on Monday (Jul 5), after coming into close contact with a business leader who later tested positive for COVID-19.

The prime minister had met Veerasak Pisanuwong, the president of the Surin Chamber of Commerce while visiting Phuket last week, according to local media.

“I would like to confirm that the prime minister will continue to work as usual and monitor the situation closely. Moreover, he did not test positive," government spokesperson Anucha Burapachaisri told local media on Monday.

"He has been continually taking COVID-19 tests and will keep doing so in order to make the public confident that the country will continue moving forward and that the COVID-19 situation will still be closely monitored and solved," Mr Anucha added.

According to local media reports, Gen Prayut left the Government House at about noon on Monday to work from home, after meeting with a Myanmar diplomat.

Last week, he travelled to the popular resort island of Phuket to attend the province’s reopening event, where he was in close contact with Mr Veerasak.

Shortly after returning to Surin province from Phuket, Mr Veerasak tested positive for the coronavirus and announced it on his Facebook page, local media reported.

“I apologise to everyone for the concern and the shock. Whoever was in close contact with me should observe yourself for 14 days,” Mr Veerasak said.

READ: FAQ - What foreign tourists can and cannot do in Phuket after island reopening

Phuket reopened to international tourism on Jul 1 under a new tourism initiative called Phuket Sandbox, designed to help the economy recover from the pandemic.

Tourists are no longer required to undergo any quarantine if they have been fully vaccinated against the coronavirus in their country for at least 14 days and test negative upon arrival.

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Source: CNA/pp

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