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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs   18 October 2013  

Laos, Thailand to hold friendship almsgiving

People from Laos and Thailand will share in the first friendship almsgiving (Tak Baat) on the morning of October 19 at Vat Phoxay temple in Nong Khai province, Thailand.

Vice Mayor of Vientiane, Saithong Keoduangdy, told media representatives at a press conference on Tuesday this will be the first ever friendship almsgiving shared by citizens of the two countries.

“Prime Minister Thongsing Thammavong along with Vientiane authorities will lead the Lao people to participate in this event in response to an invitation from Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra,” he said.

The historic event will see thousands of people from the host country and several hundred Lao people and monks take part in merit-making activities.

The ceremony will be an adjunct to other rituals marking the end of the three month Buddhist Lent.

“It is a remarkable event for the people of the two countries; it will enhance relations and solidarity as well as further our support for each other in the future,” Mr Saithong said.

Some 300 people and 99 monks from Laos will take part in the ceremony, excluding the prime minister's party and reporters.

Lao media representatives will be present to cover the momentous occasion.

Saithong said Lao participants will wear traditional dress as a symbol of national identity. More than 3,000 Thai monks will also take part, Saithong said.--Vientiane Times

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More






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