Students wearing face masks and face shields sing the national anthem during a flag-raising ceremony . Reuters
Thailand has begun a fifth phase of relaxations of COVID-19 restrictions, allowing the reopening of schools and high-risk entertainment venues such as pubs and massage parlors that had been shut since mid-March.
It also is allowing in foreign visitors on a controlled basis, limiting entry to those with existing family or work ties to the country, students, technical experts for businesses, investors and specially invited VIPs. Scheduled passenger flights to Thailand were suspended in early April.
The number of foreign visitors allowed into the country each day is limited to 200, and they are supposed to travel on repatriation flights bringing Thai citizens home. All returnees, foreign and Thai, will be subject to varying degrees of quarantine.
All confirmed coronavirus cases for the past five weeks have been repatriated Thais rather than cases of local transmission, giving the government confidence to lift restrictions. However, it has extended through July a state of emergency, though critics charge it is used to suppress political dissent.
Reopened establishments still have to maintain social distancing rules. A contact tracing app already used at shopping malls is also mandated for the reopened entertainment venues.
South Africa has counted nearly 50,000 cases of the new coronavirus - the most of any country in sub-Saharan Africa - along with almost 1,000 deaths.
The Ministry of Education went on to say that exams would be held via distance-learning modes and systems.
All chefs involved in the project are receiving 400 baht ($12) a day, while taxi drivers are earning 300 baht ($9) for transporting the food to 50 low-income communities across Bangkok. Around 4,000 meals are being made each day.
Almost a million Rohingya — most of whom fled a military offensive in neighbouring Myanmar in 2017 — live in a vast network of squalid camps in south-eastern Bangladesh.
Authorities reported the deaths all took place in Nakhon Si Thammarat province, where television footage showed staff of a hospital piling up sandbags outside an emergency room to fend off water gushing in from the street.
Tariq Saeed Allay said, "The special concert celebrating the 49th National Day reflects Sharjah’s keenness to translate the ideals and values of the UAE federation and its commitment to support humanitarian initiatives."