Search

 

Cablegate: Thailand Country Clearance For: Eap/Mls Cambodia

VZCZCXRO2279
OO RUEHHM
DE RUEHBK #7181/01 3340824
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 300824Z NOV 06
FM AMEMBASSY BANGKOK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 3239
INFO RUEHPF/AMEMBASSY PHNOM PENH PRIORITY 1867
RUEHVN/AMEMBASSY VIENTIANE PRIORITY 2938
RUEHHM/AMCONSUL HO CHI MINH CITY PRIORITY 0381

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 BANGKOK 007181

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OTRA AMGT TH
SUBJECT: THAILAND COUNTRY CLEARANCE FOR: EAP/MLS CAMBODIA
DESK OFFICER - DION (SHANNON) DORSEY

REF: STATE 191832

1. Post warmly welcomes and grants country clearance to Dion
Shannon Dorsey from Dec. 11 - Dec. 20, 2006.

2. Hotel reservations have been made as follows:

Dec. 11-13, 2006 - Confirmation No: 525485

Four Seasons Hotel, 155 Rajadamri Road
Tel: 66-2-251-6127
Fax: 66-2-254-5390

Room rate is USD 145 (taxes and American breakfast included)
and is within per diem (lodging $25, M&IE - $57.

Tues., Dec. 19 - Confirmation No: 59581

Novotel Suvarnbhumi Airport Hotel, 999 Suvarnabhumi Airport
Hotel
Samutprakam, Bangkok
Tel: 66-2-131-1111
Fax: 66-2-131-1188

Room Rate is Baht 4,178 net (taxes and American breakfast
included) and within per diem. Express breakfast at the
Square Restaurant at 0300 hrs.

3. Embassy point of contact is:

Name: Jennifer (JR) Littlejohn
Work phone: (66-2) 205-4599
Cell phone: (66-8) 1918-3116
Unclass E-mail Address: LittlejohnJR@state.gov

SIPDIS

After-hours emergency number for the Embassy is (66-2)
205-4108.

4. The new airport for Bangkok, Suvarnabhumi, commenced
international operations September 28, 2006. For more
information, please refer to the following link:
http://www.bangkokairportonline.com

5. Embassy will not be providing transportation, but the
following services are available from the airport. Thai
Airways Limousine Service and American Express Airport Taxi
are recommended for persons unfamiliar with Bangkok; these
services are located on the 2nd floor of Suvarnabhumi Airport
for arriving passengers and the cost of a one-way trip varies
from 700 to 1,500 Baht, depending on the type of vehicle,
with an additional 70 Baht for highway tolls. The new
airport has limited facilities for regular taxis in the main
terminal and if no taxis are available there, arriving
passengers will have to board an airport shuttle bus from the
main terminal to a nearby taxi and bus terminal. Regular
taxis cost approximately 225 Baht, not including tolls, and
an airport taxi surcharge of 50 Baht. Currently, the Thai
Baht is approximately 37/dollar.

6. Although visas are not required of holders of U.S.
passports (whether diplomatic, official or tourist) who plan
to stay fewer than 30 days, post nonetheless recommends that
TDY travelers obtain an official visa before coming to
Thailand. It is extremely difficult to extend the 30-day
entry permit granted without a visa at the airport, and fines
for overstays are costly.

7. Thailand has an airport departure tax of 700 Baht that
must be paid in local currency upon departure.

8. SECURITY INFORMATION

-----------------------------------------
A. MANDATORY PERSONAL SECURITY TRAINING:
-----------------------------------------

-- All U.S. citizen personnel serving under Chief of Mission
authority in a temporary duty status of 30 days or more must
complete appropriate overseas personal security training
prior to travel (04 State 66580). Employees who have
completed the Security Overseas Seminar course at State,s
Foreign Service Institute (FSI) after June 1, 2000 meet this
requirement. All other TDYers must either, 1) complete the
approved four-day seminar at FSI entitled "Serving Abroad for
Families & Employees (SAFE)" or 2) have their agency certify
to the State Department Bureau of Diplomatic Security that
the employee has undergone equivalent security training. The
contact for this certification is Assistant Director of
Training, DS/T, at telephone (703) 205-2617. Country

BANGKOK 00007181 002 OF 003


clearance will not be granted for any traveler with planned
TDY in excess of 30 days if this information is not
stated/certified. POC for additional information is
DS RSOBangkok@state.gov.

-----------
B. CRIME:
-----------

-- Crime is generally non-confrontational in nature.
Criminal acts are usually crimes of opportunity such as
purse-snatchings, thefts of unattended property, and pick
pocketing. Visitors should be especially alert in crowded
buses, streets, and markets or while on "tuk-tuks." Visitors
should lock valuables in hotel safe deposit boxes not in
their hotel rooms.

-- Be aware of common scams and frauds (including credit
cards, in particular). Visitors should only use credit cards
at well-established and reputable businesses. Visitors
should be careful when purchasing branded or copyrighted
goods. There are many pirated counterfeit products in the
marketplace; their purchase is against post regulations and
it is illegal to import these products into the U.S. Be wary
of common scams for jewelry, suits, silks, gems, or
antiquities. There are no Thai government-owned or sponsored
gem stores. If victimized, seek assistance from Tourist
Police by dialing 1155.

-- Visitors are cautioned from visiting bars involved in the
sex trade. Many of these operate illegally and clients can
be subject to RTG law; they often charge exorbitant drink
prices and cover charges. There are also many incidents of
crime against patrons in these establishments. Drugging and
robbing of unwary individuals is not uncommon. There are
sporadic reports of victims being drugged and robbed or
beaten when visiting these bars. The drugs used can cause
serious temporary memory impairment, unconsciousness, and if
overdosed, death.

-------------
C. TRAFFIC:
-------------

-- The traffic situation in Bangkok can be difficult and
dangerous for both pedestrians and vehicle occupants. All
visitors should be a1ert to traffic patterns and unexpected
motorcycle drivers. Traffic drives on the left-hand side,
opposite from the U.S., although there may be a bus lane that
flows in the opposite direction. Pedestrians should use the
overhead walkways for crossing busy streets.

--------------
D. TERRORISM:
--------------

-- The threat from transnational terrorist groups to the
U.S. Mission in Bangkok is currently ranked high. Despite
stepped up RTG efforts to monitor its borders, they remain
relatively porous and allow easy illegal access.
Transnational terrorist groups, including Al-Qa'ida and
Jemaah Islamiyah (JI), have utilized Thailand as a transit
point.

-- The threat from indigenous terrorist groups is currently
rated as low. There is no evidence to indicate that
indigenous terrorist groups are planning acts against U.S.
personnel or facilities. The far south of Thailand has
experienced incidents of criminally and politically motivated
violence, including incidents attributed to armed local
Muslim separatist groups. Although Americans have not been
specifically targeted in the past, the indiscriminate nature
of past attacks by these groups -- including bombings of
public places -- indicates a potential threat to American
citizens.

-- The State Department is concerned that there is an
increased risk of terrorism in Southeast Asia, including
Thailand. Travelers to Thailand should therefore exercise
caution, especially in locations where Westerners congregate,
such as clubs, discos, bars, restaurants, hotels, tourist
areas, and other places frequented by foreigners.

------------------------
E. OTHER SECURITY TIPS:
------------------------

-- Visitors should avoid making any pejorative comments
about any members of the Thai Royal Family or engaging in

BANGKOK 00007181 003 OF 003


disrespectful conduct within temples or toward religious
objects. Such behavior can result in arrest and/or expulsion
from Thailand.

-- Precautions should also be taken not to discuss sensitive
or classified matters outside secure environments or over
unsecured and/or cellular telephones, and to securely
safeguard classified or sensitive materials at the Chancery
and not at hotels or residences.

-- Visitors should also be aware of the State Department,s
Consular Information Sheet for Thailand and the most recent
Worldwide Caution Public Announcements, which are available
via the Internet at http://travel.state.gov. DOD personnel
must review the PACOM Force Protection Levels for Thailand
found at http://131.84.1.218/staff/at/athome.shtml.

-- In essence, visitors to Bangkok must exercise appropriate
caution and be alert to their surroundings with regard to
their personal security. Suspicious incidents/activities
should be reported to RSO Bangkok (tel. 02-205-4000, 24
hrs/day). On behalf of US Embassy Bangkok, we hope you have
a safe and pleasant visit.
BOYCE

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

UN News: UN Strongly Condemns Knife Attack Inside Nice Church Which Left Three Dead

The UN Secretary-General on Thursday strongly condemned a knife attack inside a French church in the southern French city of Nice, which reportedly left three worshippers dead. In a statement released by his Spokesperson, António Guterres extended his ... More>>

ALRANZ: Denounces US Senate Confirmation Of Judge Barrett

ALRANZ Abortion Rights Aotearoa denounces the US Senate’s confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court seat formerly held by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg. “This action demonstrates the rank hypocrisy of the once-respected upper chamber ... More>>

UN News: Millions Affected As Devastating Typhoon Strikes Viet Nam

A major typhoon has struck central Viet Nam, affecting millions of people – including about 2.5 million children – in a region already reeling from the effects of severe floods, according to UN agencies in the country. There are also reports that 174 ... More>>

Reporters Without Borders: Julian Assange’s Extradition Hearing Marred By Barriers To Open Justice

After monitoring four weeks of evidence in the US extradition proceedings against Wikileaks publisher Julian Assange, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) reiterates concern regarding the targeting of Assange for his contributions to journalism, and calls ... More>>