Thirty Thais in Libya do not want to return to Thailand but the authorities are trying to convince them to leave for their own safety, Supreme Commander Gen Thanasak Patimapagorn said Monday.
Eighteen Thai evacuees from Libya will arrive in Bangkok today and 81 others on Wednesday, he said. So far, 410 Thai workers have received payment from their employers to leave for Thailand, but 562 other workers have received no help from their employers. The Thai government will cover the expenses for them. About 300 workers are said to be at safe locations in Libya, and the Thai authorities are attempting to contact them. Gen Tanasak said the Thai Air Force is ready to deploy its C-130 transport aircraft to support the evacuation when the Ministry of Foreign Affairs requests it to do so. At present the evacuation depends mainly on commercial aircraft. He said the general situation in Libya is calm but uncertain as battles continued in several locations. The Thai authorities are awaiting the outcome from a session of the Libyan parliament for further decisions. Thailand also plans to charter ships to evacuate Thaise from Libya, Gen Tanasak said. He gave assurance of safe evacuation for all Thais from Libya.