Coalition partners Bhumjai Thai and the Democrat Party have signaled to the cabinet that all of Thailand’s land borders must be closed in order to prevent more Covid-19 infections.
Thailand has currently imposed a mandatory 14 day quarantine to all visitors from abroad but Myanmar refugees have made their way into the country seeking to escape from the Myanmar Junta’s persecution.
The government has so far opened its borders temporarily allowing some refugees to enter before pushing them back once the violence dies down.
However, MPs from coalition partners are asking the governments to close the borders indefinitely while the country struggles to control the third wave of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“I understand that we have to have a humanitarian heart but as the government of Thailand our people must come first,” a senior Democrat MP told Thai Enquirer on condition of anonymity.
“We are not asking for the borders to be closed forever but unless we do it, we will be fighting a two-front war against this pandemic.”
The government has already stopped arrivals from South Asian countries following the discovery of a new strain of the virus in India that was found to be more contagious.
“We do not know what kind of policies our neighbours have and whether this would open up the country to these new strains,” the MP said. “I think our coalition partners are with me in understanding how stretched our public health system is. We must do what is best for our people.”