From Belarus to Thailand: Hong Kong’s protest playbook is spreading everywhere
Black-clad protesters with colorful umbrellas. Yellow helmets and plumes of tear gas. Leaderless crowds standing off against police. These protest scenes around the world – in places as different as Thailand, Belarus, Lebanon and the United States – have been striking in their likeness to the anti-government protests in Hong Kong last year. Social media has been central to helping protesters in Hong Kong draw global attention to their calls for freer elections and greater autonomy from Beijing. The loosely coordinated campaign in Hong Kong has also spread protest savvy, leading to a global wave of demonstrations more resistant to conventional law enforcement tactics and forming unlikely alli
The secret links between Chinese and Thai food
Chinese and Thai cultures are linked for more than just their love of food. They have also been trading cooking styles and ingredients for generations. Traders from both regions often traveled between the two countries, bringing spices and cooking techniques to the other. You can taste it in Thai cooking today. We meet Chinnapatt Chongtong, founder of the Chili Paste Tour and a Thai food expert, in Bangkok to find out where these links come from and the Chinese culinary traditions hidden in plain sight in Thailand.
First case of mystery viral infection confirmed outside China
Thai authorities confirmed on Monday the first case outside China of a patient infected with the new virus behind the Wuhan pneumonia outbreak. The woman, 61, is identified as a Chinese tourist from the city in central Hubei province.  She has been receiving treatment in a hospital in Nonthaburi near Bangkok since January 8, but is now recovering, according to Bloomberg and Thai media outlets. An expert said if further investigation found she had not been to Huanan Seafood Market, associated with the outbreak in Wuhan, it would suggest that the virus had spread to other parts of the city. The news came as Hong Kong health officials arrived in Wuhan on Monday to gain first-hand knowledge of t
Serial child killer, cannibal, bogeyman – or scapegoat?
Si Quey Sae-ung’s reputation precedes him: notorious serial killer, vicious child murderer and ghoulish cannibal. Seen as evil personified in Thailand, the Chinese immigrant has become part of local folklore. He has been immortalized in films and books. He has also been a bogeyman for generations of children. For decades Thai parents have been warning their offspring that if they misbehaved, stayed out late or skipped school, Si Quey would come and eat their liver. Yet his embalmed corpse, in a small medical museum at Bangkok’s oldest hospital, doesn’t appear menacing at all. Si Quey’s preserved remains are on permanent display at the hospital’s Forensic Medicine Museum. Beside his corpse is
A splashy start to the Thai new year
Every April, Thais around the world splash water on each other to welcome a refreshing new year. On April 13, the first day of Songkran, the traditional Thai new year, people in Thailand and Thai communities around the world pick up buckets to engage in water fights. It’s believed that the ritual washes away bad luck from yesteryear and usher in a prosperous new year. The three-day festival is also a time for the family to gather, and for devotees to visit temples to pay their respect by pouring water over Buddha statues. The festival is widely celebrated in Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Myanmar. In China, it is celebrated in the southwestern province of Yunnan among the Dai people, an ethnic
I used to think Chinese on tour groups were absurd. Then I became one.
I knew traveling as part of a tour group was the pits. I knew that the Lunar New Year holiday is the worst time to travel. Yet when my father proposed that my family go with a group of 20 other people to Thailand for Lunar New Year, I complied. I did it out of guilt and a sense of duty, as a prodigal Chinese daughter who in the past eight years had barely seen my family. Short on time to plan a trip myself but feeling compelled to spend some time with my family, I thought I’d put up with the excruciation and the absurdity of being on a tour group. As we arrived in Bangkok in the wee hours of February 8, it turned out that more than 330,000 other Chinese people had had the same idea. Chinese
‘Because here is freedom’: why Chinese tourists love Thailand
Chinese tourists are pouring into Pattaya, one of Thailand's biggest tourist towns.  Pattaya is known for its red-light district and bars, but it’s becoming increasingly popular with tourists of all kinds from China. They’re becoming one of the biggest revenue sources for the whole of Thailand's tourism industry. A tour boat accident in Phuket in 2018, which lead to the death of 47 Chinese tourists, lead to a drop in tourism across Thailand. But now, almost a full year later, the tourists are back and flooding into Pattaya once more.
Thailand apologizes after airport guard slaps Chinese tourist
The Thai government has scrambled to restore Chinese tourists’ confidence in the popular travel destination after a video clip showing an airport security guard slapping a Chinese tourist went viral. The incident happened last Thursday when a Chinese tourist, identified as Mei Ji, got into an argument with a Thai airport security guard after he was denied entry at Bangkok’s Don Mueang Airport. Mei said that the guard assaulted him because he declined to pay extra to go through a faster immigration channel. But Thai media reported that the guard hit the tourist after he refused to wait in a detention room after failing to present necessary documents at immigration. Thai Prime Minister Prayut
Chinese cancel Thai vacations after deadly accident
The world was heartened by the miraculous rescue of 12 boys trapped in a cave in northern Thailand last week. But a tragedy at the other end of the country had a far less happy outcome. And now, less than two weeks after a boat accident on July 5 claimed the lives of 47 Chinese nationals, upset Chinese tourists are steering clear of the island paradise of Phuket.   Around 7,300 rooms at 19 hotels booked by Chinese tourists have been cancelled, Kongkiat Khuphongsakorn, president of a southern Thai hotel association, told the Bangkok Post.   The cancellations have caused more than $200,000 in losses, Kongkiat said, and are poised to have knock-on effects on the islands other tourism sectors su