BANGKOK (AP) — Certainly one of Thailand’s main vacationer points of interest is barring entry to foreigners, professing worry that they might unfold the coronavirus.
Indicators seen Thursday morning on the important gate of Wat Pho, the Buddhist temple adjoining to the Grand Palace in Bangkok, mentioned in English: “Open for Thai solely,” “ONLY THAI PEOPLE,” and “NOW NOT OPEN FOR FOREIGNERS.”
The temple is likely one of the nation’s grandest, with murals and gold trim masking many surfaces, however is finest identified for housing the 46-meter-long (151-foot-long) Reclining Buddha, which is roofed in gold leaf.
Certainly one of Wat Pho’s administrative employees defined by telephone that the temple committee determined to exclude foreigners due to issues about COVID-19.
“The outbreak continues to be rampant in lots of nations, so we’ve got to remain vigilant as suggested by the federal government,” mentioned Wit Artchinda.
Nonetheless, there isn’t a identified authorities order to ban foreigners from the temple.
Thai guests are allowed entry to the temple, extra formally often called Wat Phra Chetuphon, which solely reopened final week after being closed for 2 months throughout Thailand’s coronavirus lockdown.
For now the ban has little sensible impact past excluding expatriates who dwell within the nation, as Thailand has been closed to overseas vacationers for 2 months. Incoming worldwide passenger flights are banned till a minimum of the tip of the month.
Tourism is a large trade in Thailand and its digital shutdown has dealt a serious blow to the economic system.
Thailand’s toll of COVID-19 instances has been comparatively gentle, and most up-to-date instances have been Thais who’ve returned from overseas on particular evacuation flights. No new instances have been reported Thursday, holding the overall variety of instances at three,125, with 58 deaths.
The temple employees member additionally mentioned that many elements of the temple, together with the corridor the place the Reclining Buddha is situated, are present process development work that limits entry anyway.
“Overseas vacationers must pay 200 baht ($6.50) per go to into the temple,” Wit mentioned. “After they pay the cash and can’t see so many issues that they wish to see, we’re afraid that they is perhaps pissed off.”
He didn’t say when the temple would possibly admit overseas guests once more.