THAILAND: Chiang Mai cleans market after feasting rats caught on video

Chiang Mai city officials have reviewed regulations governing cleanliness of fresh markets after a viral video clip showed rats eating pork left unattended at a butcher shop in Muang Mai Market.

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Thailand, for example lower Sukhumvit in Bangkok, is full, but full of these hungry creatures! There are thousands of them!

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Probe into missing Laos activist a ‘farce’: rights groups

BANGKOK – An investigation into the disappearance of Laotian activist Sombath Somphone three years ago is “a farce” and has had a chilling effect on civil society, rights groups said Monday.

Sombath, an award-winning campaigner for sustainable development, vanished from the streets of Vientiane after he was pulled over at a police checkpoint on the evening of December 15, 2012.

CCTV cameras in the Laos capital captured the moment his battered jeep stopped at the checkpoint before he is later seen getting into an unknown vehicle.

His case has cast a dark cloud over civil society in Laos, an impoverished tightly-controlled communist country.

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THAILAND: Activist urges EU to rethink approach

European Union governments and citizens should take action to ensure the money they are injecting into a UN programme to fight slave labour in Thailand is well spent, urged an activist. Andy Hall, a British human rights defender and a migrant worker specialist based in Thailand, tweeted shortly on Monday after the AP report on slave labour in the seafood industry was published.

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Nurofen to be pulled in Australia over misleading claims

SYDNEY – Nurofen feels pain in Australia over misleading claims, Drug giant Reckitt Benckiser was Monday ordered to pull some of its popular Nurofen painkiller brands off shelves in Australia after a court ruled they made misleading claims.

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Shrimp peeled by slaves in Thailand

SAMUT SAKHON – Every morning at 2 o’clock, they heard a kick on the door and a threat: Get up or get beaten. For the next 16 hours, No.31 and his wife stood with their aching hands in ice water in the factory that owned them. They ripped the guts, heads, tails and shells off shrimp bound for overseas markets, including grocery stores and all-you-can-eat buffets across the United States, Europe and Asia.

After being sold to the Gig Peeling Factory, they were at the mercy of their Thai bosses, trapped with nearly 100 other Burmese migrants. Children worked alongside them, including a girl so tiny she had to stand on a stool to reach the peeling table. Some had been there for months, even years, getting little or no pay. Always, someone was watching.

No names were ever used, only numbers given by their boss – Tin Nyo Win was No.31.

Pervasive human trafficking has helped turn Thailand into one of the world’s biggest shrimp providers. Despite repeated promises by businesses and government to clean up the country’s US$7 billion seafood export industry, an Associated Press investigation has found shrimp peeled by modern-day slaves is reaching the US, Europe and Asia.

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Myanmar shrimp shed worker Tin Nyo Win, left, and his wife, Mi San, were arrested in Samut Sakhon after talking about conditions in the shrimp export industry – fingerprinted, held on 140,000 baht bail, charged with entering the country illegally and working without permits. (All photos by AP)

Global supermarkets selling shrimp peeled by slaves: AP

In this Sept 30 photo, workers transport baskets filled with shrimp at a seafood market in Mahachai, Thai-land. Thailand sends nearly half of its supply of shrimp to the US. - AP

In this Sept 30 photo, workers transport baskets filled with shrimp at a seafood market in Mahachai, Thai-land. Thailand sends nearly half of its supply of shrimp to the US. – AP

Borneo Bulletin

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THAILAND: World media lauds Paween, but at home he’s a leper

If I were in national police chief Chakthip Chaijinda’s shoes I would be feeling very upset with Pol Maj-Gen Paween Pongsirin, the former deputy commissioner of provincial police Region 8 and chief investigator of the high-profile Rohingya trafficking case.

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BANGKOK: Poor service sets back taxi fare hike

A 5% rise in taxi fares will not occur this year as complaints over bad service, including drivers rejecting passengers, show no sign of stopping.

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