6 June 2024

Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin refuted a report today (Friday), which claimed that 54 Thai nationals are among the 220 hostages being held by Hamas in Gaza.

“I have checked and verified the situation with our Thai ambassador in Israel, as well as with security agencies, and they confirm that 18 Thais are being held. The number of 54 may be the result of some sort of confusion,” he said.

Reuters news agency quoted the Israeli government yesterday as saying the number is 54.

Meanwhile, Thai Foreign Ministry spokesperson Kanchana Patarachoke revealed that the current Thai death toll is 33, 18 injured and 18 others held hostage.

So far, the remains of 15 of the Thais killed have been returned to Thailand, she said, adding that 4,771 Thais have, so far, also returned to Thailand on 23 government-sponsored flights.

At least 40 Thais, who enrolled to study at the Arava International Centre for Agriculture Training, have returned to Thailand, while 75 others want to remain in Israel, she said.

She advised those who are remaining there to make safety their priority, saying that they should come home first and think about their next move.