The first group of 15 Thais will leave Israel on a commercial fight for Thailand this Wednesday and are scheduled to arrive in Bangkok the following day, Deputy Foreign Minister Jakkapong Sangmanee told the Thai media today (Monday) at the Rapid Response Center.
The returnees will be met at Suvarnabhumi airport and given medical check-ups upon arrival by officials from the Health, Labour, Social Development and Human Security ministries.
Jakkapong said that the Israeli government has not allowed military plane or special flight to enter their air space.
He also said that 12 Thais are reported to have been killed in Hamas attacks, but the figures are yet to be confirmed by the Israeli embassy in Bangkok. Nine were injured and 11 others are being held by Hamas, he added.
The deputy foreign minister disclosed that, so far, 1,437 Thais have expressed their wish to return to Thailand, while 23 others have refused to be evacuated, adding that Israeli officials had managed to evacuate a group of Thai workers from the danger zone to safety.
He said more officials from the Foreign Ministry will be sent to Israel to help in the evacuation process, noting that the movement of people from one location to another requires prior permission from the authorities, due to the tense situation.
He disclosed that several countries, such as Malaysia, Egypt and Jordan, have expressed sympathy and promised to do their best to secure the release of Thai hostages.