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Curfew ending, country remains closed to outsiders

Night-time silence like this on the Memorial Bridge in Bangkok will end on Monday, when the government lifts the curfew imposed to control Covid-19. (Photo: Arnun Chonmahatrakool)

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The night curfew will end on Monday, but strict controls will continue for immigration because Covid-19 is coming from other countries, a senior government spokesman announced on Friday.

Taweesilp Visanuyothin of the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) said the curfew would end on June 15 to allow local people to travel, because there had not been a case of local coronavirus infection for some time.

However, the government would maintain controls on all immigration - by land, water and air - because all new Covid-19 patients were people returning from other countries, he said.

The CCSA had also agreed on other aspects of the fourth stage of relaxation of restrictions on business and other activities, starting from Monday, Dr Taweesilp said

International, cram and informal schools will reopen. Governmental organisations can hold meetings.

Exhibition, convention and event halls can also resume activities, along with theatres, but must maintain social distancing.

Alcohol could be served at restaurants, food centres and hotels, but pubs, bars, karaoke shops and entertainment venues would remain closed.

Daycare centres for young children and elderly people could reopen, but must also avoid crowding. 

Scientific centres for learning could reopen, with a limited number of visitors at one time. Film crews could have up to 150 staff and up to 50 spectators.

Parlours offering Thai massage and saunas reopen, with a limited number of customers using facilities at the same time. Soapy massage parlours remain closed. Group exercise in parks and other outdoor locations could resume, with up to 50 people participating.

Dr Taweesilp said domestic airlines could sell all seats on a flight, because planes have good ventilation systems and flight-times are short, about one hour. Infection on average needed at least two hours of exposure, he said. However, airline passengers must continue to wear face masks.

However, occupancy on buses would be limited to 70% of seats, because bus trips were longer and their ventilation systems were poor, he said.

Water parks, playgrounds and amusement parks could reopen. Sports could resume, but without spectators. Game arcades in malls could reopen.

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