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Thailand Live Friday 13 Jan 2012

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Thailand Live Friday 13 January 2012

News, Bits and Tweets

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Keep up to date with live updates from the news, hour by hour.

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Related topic: Thailand Live Thursday 12 Jan 2012

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Accused slapper yet to appear

The Nation


Samut Prakarn - The senior customs official, who slapped a Suvarnabhumi Airport security officer in the ear for having asked him to undergo a security check - an incident widely shown on YouTube - has not yet responded to a police summons.

Suvarnabhumi Airport police station superintendent Pol Col Natthanan Nanasombat said yesterday the senior official Sombat Chatchaiwaiwit had been given a week, before January 18, to contact police or an arrest warrant would be issued. The police investigator also requested the victim's physical examination results from hospital to use in the case investigation and has interviewed witnesses. Police are also investigating who released the video clip of the incident on to the Internet.


-- The Nation 2012-01-13

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New group of academics to protect monarchy

The Nation


A new group of academics is set to be launched today to campaign for protection of the monarchy.

Assoc Prof Banjerd Singkaneti, dean of the Law School of National Institute of Development Administration (Nida), said that more than 20 academics from five universities have formed a group called "Sayam Prachapiwat" (Siamese People's Great Development). The group would be officially launched today (Friday) at the institute.

Banjerd said the group's academic were concerned about the ongoing "monopoly of Thai politics" by a group of capitalists and politicians, as well as "the crisis of freedom and ethics". He said the group would make its views on certain important issues, such as constitutional amendment, reforms for society, laws and politics.

"Our views are based on the principle that the Thai society's values must not be copied from the West. Our society respects the monarchy and this value is an important principle in Thai society," Banjerd said.

He denied that his group was set up against a group of law lecturers known as "Niti Rassadorn" (Citizens of Law).

"There is a need for Thai society to become 'prachapiwat'. The people must be the main part of society, and not the elite alone," Banjerd said.


-- The Nation 2012-01-13

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Thailand's first endoscopic surgery performed in Siriraj Hospital

The Nation


Southeast Asia's first endoscopic surgery was performed successfully at Siriraj Hospital on a cervicalcancer patient, allowing her to recover fully and giving her the chance of getting pregnant.

The surgeon behind the miracle, Assoc Prof Dr Perapong Inthasorn, told the press yesterday the patient had shown no adverse reactions and was menstruating normally. "The surgery took place a year ago," he said.

The patient, who is 30 now, said she was reluctant to have her uterus removed because she wanted to be given the chance to bear children.

"I consulted the doctor at the Siriraj Hospital and was told there was an option of endoscopic surgery. But he also said that such a procedure had never been performed in Thailand before. Yet I decided to go for it," she said.

According to Perapong, the surgery took about five hours and cost about Bt50,000. Patients under the universal healthcare or social security scheme are also entitled to this treatment.

"This is a choice for cancer patients at stage 1," he said. "They have a 90 to 95 per cent chance of recovery, just as she would have had if her uterus was removed."

He explained that endoscopic surgery was better than the conventional procedure as the surgical wound was much smaller. "So, there's less pain involved," he said.

Perapong went on to say that the endoscopy procedure helped surgeons to see small blood vessels clearly, thus allowing them to only remove the bad ones.

"The remaining blood vessels will serve to nourish the foetus if the patient becomes pregnant later," he said.

To date, about 50 patients across the world have successfully received treatment for cervical cancer via endoscopic surgery.

Clinical Prof Chanchai Vantanasiri, who heads the Faculty of Medicine Siriraj Hospital's Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, said Siriraj Hospital saw 5,000 new cases of cervical cancer every year.

"Cervical cancer is the second most common form of cancer among Thai women after breast cancer," he said.

Asst Prof Chairat Leelaphatanadit, who heads the faculty's Gynecologic Cancer Division, recommends that all women over the age of 35 and those who are sexually active, should have a pelvic examination at least once a year.

"The examination takes just five minutes and detecting the cancer early will provide a high chance of recovery," he said.


-- The Nation 2012-01-13

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Author, editor passes away

Jim Pollard

The Nation


David Butler, an American correspondent who arrived in Southeast Asia 41 years ago and wrote an acclaimed book about the last year of the Vietnam War, has died in a Bangkok hospital.

Butler, 70, a subeditor at The Nation for more than 10 years, passed away on Tuesday afternoon after battling throat cancer for several months.

While Butler is perhaps best known for his book "The Fall of Saigon", published in 1985, he lived in Bangkok for more than two decades - a short period in the early 1980s, and since his return to Thailand in 1992. An alumnus of Dartmouth College (class of 1963) in the US, Butler was born in Wakefield, Massachusetts, in 1941. He had many friends among older members of the expatriate journalist community here.

From 1966 to 1974, Butler was an editor at Playboy magazine. During this period he made several trips to Vietnam. He also had interesting dealings with Hunter S Thompson, the wild boozer and drug-taker whose adventures have been immortalised by Johnny Depp in the film, "The Rum Diary".

In the late '60s and early '70s, Butler commissioned Thompson to write several articles for Playboy, one of which was about a fishing competition in Mexico. This piece later became known as "The Great White Shark Hunt", the title piece of a popular anthology of Thompson's work released in 1980.

Copies of Butler's letters to Thompson can be found at the website AFistfulofCulture.com.

In 1987, he was one of the assistant editors of the first edition of The King of Thailand in World Focus. The David Butler who ended up working on The Nation for the last decade of his life, was a totally different character - an earnest and deeply serious man, who struggled to fill in missing elements and improve the quality of many young journalists' work.

Last September, Butler took leave treatment to battle cancer of the throat. In recent weeks, he was visited by his brother and two sisters, who live in the US.

Friends and members of the press will attend his funeral at Wat Pho Tham on Rama II Road tomorrow at 4pm.


-- The Nation 2012-01-13

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Drug-dealers charged with police officer's murder


Police have pressed murder charges against drug suspects who rammed their car into a police motorcycle, knocking a police captain off the bike and dragging him under the car for up to 15 metres, killing the officer in the process.

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BANGKOK 24 January 2018 01:04