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  #41  
Old 01-06-2005, 08:59 AM
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Hi everybody don't you all think that despite we have seen the bad catastrophe which brought a great pain and sadness in many of human life we also can see how wonderful when (almost) the entire world is hand to hand together to help the unlucky one. High technology machines are using to help human life and not to destroy it.
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  #42  
Old 01-06-2005, 12:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by galuhcandrakirana
Hi everybody don't you all think that despite we have seen the bad catastrophe which brought a great pain and sadness in many of human life we also can see how wonderful when (almost) the entire world is hand to hand together to help the unlucky one. High technology machines are using to help human life and not to destroy it.
That is true. So many countries have responded with unprecedented generosity.
The region that has received criticism for being too stingy, however, is the Middle East, most specifically, the Gulf States and Saudi Arabia.
These are oil-rich nations that have not only been slow to respond to the crisis but have actually called the tsunami a punishment from God. I was appalled at this reaction. They have only now started responding after criticism from abroad.


Arab response to tsunami picks up

Amman, Jordan, Jan. 6 (UPI) -- The Arab response in assisting the victims of the tsunami hit countries in South Asia has started to pick up pace after domestic and Western media criticism that rich Arab countries were being too stingy in their contributions.
The oil-rich Gulf states found themselves on the defensive following Western criticism in the media that they had not rushed, as expected, to the assistance of their fellow Muslims in Indonesia, the most-populous Muslim country in the world.

Out of more than 150,000 killed in the Dec. 26 disaster, 94,000 people were killed in Indonesia alone, while Muslim minorities in Sri Lanka, India and Thailand have had their share of losses.

The oil-rich wealthy Arab governments came under sharp criticism, mainly from the West, for rushing to aid so-called Islamic terrorist groups through their charity organizations, while paying little attention to almost 2 million people left homeless from the killer waves.

Thus, Saudi Arabia on Tuesday raised its initial pledge of $10 million to $30 million, the United Arab Emirates to $20 million from $2 million, while Kuwait increased its initial $2 million to $10 million, as many began airlifts of relief supplies to the tsunami-hit areas in general, not only to the Muslims.

An independent Jordanian analyst said the contributions by the rich Arab governments, though they increased, were still too little compared with the damage the tsunami had left behind, constituting "a drop of what these people can really afford to give."

The analyst, who did not want to be identified, added, however, that some of these countries never rushed to assist their "own people in the region, such as those in Sudan or Iraq," insisting that they were now increasing their aid to South Asia only to try to "shut up" the West, especially the United States, which was taking center stage in assistance, and to avoid further criticism.

Considering the oil wealth in the Gulf, their pledge of $70 million, including a $10 million from Qatar, seems meager compared with the $2 billion promised by 40 countries, with Japan alone offering $500 million and the United States lifting its initial pledge of $35 million to $350 million.

In addition, some of the Arab governments have been coming under sharp criticism for not doing enough for a people they have been relying on to do menial jobs that Arabs refuse to take, such as housekeeping, farming and construction work.

Hundreds of thousands of men and women -- mostly from Sri Lanka, Indonesia and India -- work as cheap labor in these countries, growing the harvest, keeping house and practically raising children in most Arab homes. Many of them have had family members who either perished in the tsunami or were left homeless.

That was a point of issue raised this week by Kuwait's al-Qabas daily, which criticized the emirate's first contribution and commented that "we stepped into the modern world with them, and through them; its sons are helping us today in building our country and raising our children."

Lebanon's Daily Star urged Arab governments and the private sector to grab the opportunity of the disaster to "display to the world another Arab characteristic that is too often overlooked: generosity." It said that "long-established images, or caricatures, of white-robed sheikhs sailing their luxury yachts on seas of oil and using $100 bills to light their Havana cigars will only be reinforced in the face of collective miserliness in this hour of human need, especially if the petroleum-rich Gulf states do not dig a bit deeper into pockets that have become quite deep indeed over the last few years of high oil prices."

Meanwhile, it was not clear why Arab governments were not taking part in Jakarta's donor conference on Thursday that discussed reconstructing the economies of the tsunami-hit countries, in which major donors and organizations participated.

However, the Saudi-based Islamic Development Bank dispatched a delegation to the one-day meeting to assess the needs of the region.

The Saudi press in particular has defended its people's contributions to South Asia, reporting that private businessmen have taken the initiative to charter planeloads of humanitarian goods to the affected areas and that volunteers were signing up to travel to the region to help out. The papers insisted that most Saudis were not publicizing their efforts because it contradicted the principle of anonymous giving.

But initiatives to raise funds across the region, particularly in the Gulf states, have in fact begun to pick up momentum, including allocating airtime for telethons for the tsunami victims.

Government-owned Saudi Television went on air Thursday to raise funds, as did channels in the United Arab Emirates. The Qatar-based al-Jazeera news channel launched a fund-raising campaign, while the Dubai-based CNBC Arabiya, an economic and business satellite channel, said it will hold a telethon Monday.

CNBC Arabiya Vice President Mohammad Moumenine told United Press International the Arab media had a "responsibility and a duty, not only to create more awareness on the suffering incurred by the tsunami, but to do something to increase assistance from the Arab world."

The private-owned channel, which will provide bank account numbers in different Arab countries for callers to deposit their donations, is expected to raise a substantial amount of money from its audience of mostly Arab business investors and corporations.

"A penny raised is good at the end of the day," Moumenine said, adding that he hoped the program would "bring the viewer closer to the suffering" with footage, reports and live interviews with ambassadors from the disaster-hit countries based in the Arab world.

In the meantime, some cash-strained countries that themselves need economic assistance, such as Jordan and Lebanon, have offered their own contributions, many of them giving to the families of their employees.

Jordan this week delivered 22 tons of medicine and medical supplies donated by the country's pharmaceutical companies to Indonesia, while King Abdullah said he would dispatch a field hospital with a 24-member medical team to the country.

Jordan Telecom, the country's only fixed-line provider, offered free telephone calls all day Friday from Jordan to eight countries affected by the tsunami.

Lebanon's Red Cross director, Salim Layoun, said the organization has received thousands of telephone calls from citizens asking how they can donate money to the tsunami victims, and he appealed to the Lebanese to contribute one day's salary.

Lebanon's labor ministry has also offered amnesty to about 20,000 illegal Sri Lankan and Indian residents, allowing them to go back to their homes without deportation or paying hefty fines, costing the treasury $50 million.

http://www.washtimes.com/upi-breakin...5529-6384r.htm
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  #43  
Old 01-06-2005, 12:36 PM
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Arab response to Tsunami seen as appalling

Washington: Many Muslims around the world have been appalled at the “silence and stinginess” of the oil-rich Arab countries when compared to the outpouring of generosity elsewhere in the world, according to Tarek Fatah, a progressive Muslim leader and television host based in Toronto.

In a statement, he said that whereas cash-starved countries like Pakistan and Bangladesh had sent their naval ships, doctors and armed forces personnel to help Sri Lanka and Indonesia, Saudi Arabia had tossed a $10 million cheque at those affected while Kuwait had come up with a paltry $2 million.

Fatah said, “The disappointment is not just because of the pathetic contributions by Saudi Arabia or Kuwait. It is compounded by the message being repeated ad nauseam in their mosques and media that the earthquake was a punishment from God for the sins of the people of South and South East Asia. The view that wanton behavior provoked the quake was the subject of Friday sermons in Saudi Arabia and of other religious commentaries in the kingdom. “Asia’s earthquake, which hit the beaches of prostitution, tourism, immorality and nudity,” one commentator said on an Islamist website, “is a sign that God is warning mankind from persisting in injustice and immorality before he destroys the ground beneath them”.

He cited a New York Times report that quoted Walid Tabtabai, a member of the Kuwaiti Parliament, as saying that the earthquake was not simply a natural calamity, but a message from God. “We believe that what occurs in terms of disasters and afflictions is a test for believers and punishment for the unjust,” he wrote in a column in the newspaper Al Watan.

Fatah expressed astonishment that anyone would consider Tamil Nadu, Aceh, Sri Lanka, Somalia, the Islands of Nicobar and Andaman to be “beaches of prostitution, tourism, immorality and nudity. “What sick mind could come up with this description? The Kuwaitis and Saudi Islamists lecturing the world about morality is an outrage,” he added. He said the people of South Asia did not need self-righteous sermons but assistance. “Or is it that in the eyes of most Kuwaitis and Saudis, the dead belonged to the despised underclass who live as fourth class citizens in the Gulf States. “Dark skinned Indian, Sri Lankan, Indonesian; truck drivers, cooks and maids; all children of a lesser God in the eyes of these Islamists of the Gulf,” he said.

In mosques across the United States, more or less the same message is going out to the Muslim community. While appeals have been made for generous donations to relief funds, the congregations are also being told that the tsunami was “azab-e-Ilahi” or the wrath of God for the sins of those who were hit. Such calamities, they are being told, warn us to turn our back on ungodly ways and repent for our past misdeeds.
http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default...-1-2005_pg7_51
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  #44  
Old 01-06-2005, 12:45 PM
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Another article on the subject from the BBC
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/4151241.stm

I doubt we'll be seeing any gulf royalty going to south asia. Honestly, this makes me sick.
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  #45  
Old 01-06-2005, 01:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ~*~Humera~*~
Another article on the subject from the BBC
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/4151241.stm

I doubt we'll be seeing any gulf royalty going to south asia. Honestly, this makes me sick.
Sadly enough, I entirely agree with you, Humera.
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  #46  
Old 01-06-2005, 02:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hrhcp
I've read that the USA first offered
$35 million of aid, which then got bumped up to
$350 million, and is now at
$459 million plus their military helicopters flying in supplies to hard to reach villages at the northwestern end of Sumatra Island.
Actually I think it started with a pa l t r y $15 million.
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  #47  
Old 01-06-2005, 04:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blueice
Sadly enough, I entirely agree with you, Humera.
you know what angers me is that these countries can charge $50+ for a barrel of oil, their wealthy sheikhs can spend millions on fancy yachts but they cant spare any money for such a tragedy. The lack of compassion for their fellow human beings, least of all for fellow Muslims, is startling. The only reason these countries have been shamed into action is criticism from abroad and even at home. I sincerely hope and believe that the affected countries will remember this treatment for years to come.
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  #48  
Old 01-06-2005, 05:03 PM
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That Muslim compassion runs so thick. . . . .
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  #49  
Old 01-06-2005, 05:06 PM
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And the topic is still
Will royals visit Asia because of the catrosphe?
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  #50  
Old 01-06-2005, 07:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Josefine
And the topic is still
Will royals visit Asia because of the catrosphe?
Right ! .... and Humera kind of indicated that the Gulf Royalty would only visit, "kicking and screaming".
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  #51  
Old 01-07-2005, 09:27 AM
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Tsunami

What a terrible tragedy, its so sad. I thought i would start a thread on this topic.

The aid so far has been great in my opinion but a lot more could be given.

Australia has given the most so far by giving $1 billion dollars,(800 million is American dollars) pretty good for a population of 20 million people. Germany is being very generous. I would have thought that the US would have given more money but i guess they have their reasons. As long as they are contributing.

This disaster is so awful, i think it would be good for us to share our thoughts.
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  #52  
Old 01-07-2005, 09:43 AM
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you would think that Saudi Arabia and Brunei would give lots of money due to their INCREDIBLE wealth but it doesnt look like it. It looks like the Muslim world do not help eachother in emergencies.
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  #53  
Old 01-08-2005, 07:32 PM
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Bubbette and Australian, I wouldnt say Muslim aid but Arab aid. Arabs only make up around 20% or so of the Muslim world. Many other poorer nations are contributing as much as they can. Pakistan has contributed naval ships, helicopters, doctors, and a lot more. In addition to which Pakistani NGOs, charities, political parties, and the public continue to contribute food, money. Infact im very proud of the Pakistani response. Almost immediately after the disaster took place, humanitarian organizations started to mobilize and the government was loading aid onto planes to go to all the affected countries including India which refused any aid later on. All you have to do is search a newsagency like Gettyimages and type "Pakistan" and you'll see what Pakistanis from all walks of life are doing everyday to contribute aid to the affected nations.
Even a poor country like Bangladesh is contributing. So is Indonesia's neighbour Malaysia.
Muslim countries in Asia may not be oil-rich, but they dont have the superior attitude that some Arab nations have.
Muslims in the west, especially in Canada, where I live, have been incredibly generous. I have heard and seen stories of unbelievably generosity.
A lot of this criticism of the Arab nations comes from non-Arab Muslim countries and Muslims in the West. And even within these wealthy Gulf Nations, there has been plenty of criticism at home, especially in the newspapers. Which has contributed to these governments increasing their pledged amount of aid.
So I wouldnt call all Muslim response pathetic, only the Arab reaction. That was my intention when I posted all those articles. To label more than a billion Muslims ungenerous is incredibly unfair and wrong.
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  #54  
Old 01-08-2005, 07:40 PM
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Brunei To Rush Its Army, Doctors, Nurses And Others To Aceh
http://www.brudirect.com/DailyInfo/N...105/nite01.htm

The Sultan of Brunei and his brother Prince Muhammad are in Indonesia for the International summit on the tsunami
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  #55  
Old 01-08-2005, 07:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ~*~Humera~*~
Brunei To Rush Its Army, Doctors, Nurses And Others To Aceh

The Sultan of Brunei and his brother Prince Muhammad are in Indonesia for the International summit on the tsunami
Perhaps the Sultan is a frequent visitor to TRF...
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  #56  
Old 01-08-2005, 09:24 PM
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Of course, he is. :)
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  #57  
Old 01-17-2005, 01:41 PM
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Reuters:

GALLE, Sri Lanka- Asia's tsunami death toll soared past 175,000 Monday as Sri Lanka confirmed thousands more dead, while fears re-emerged over the safety of aid workers in Indonesia's shattered Aceh province.

Denmark said it had information "imminent" terror attacks were planned against aid workers in Aceh, where U.S. and other foreign troops have joined relief teams clearing rubble from the Dec. 26 disaster which killed 115,000 in that province alone.

"We have received information from sources abroad that somebody would be planning an attack today," Danish Foreign Ministry official Niels Erik Andersen told Danish radio.

Indonesia's foreign minister dismissed the report as "unfounded rumor." But it reignited fears that aid workers might become political targets in Indonesia, which has seen both a separatist rebellion in Aceh and deadly bomb attacks targeting Westerners blamed on an Islamic group linked to al Qaeda. U.S. Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz urged political opponents in both Indonesia and Sri Lanka -- facing a separatist rebellion of its own -- to put aside their differences and concentrate on relief work.

"Hopefully they will realize on all sides that the stakes that they are fighting for are relatively trivial," he said on arriving in Sri Lanka. Sri Lankan officials said another 7,275 people were now known to have died in the Dec. 26 catastrophe, taking the national total to 38,195. The jump was not due to the sudden discovery of more bodies, but rather a backlog of figures from remote areas. In a quick visit to a small village near Galle, in southern Sri Lanka, Wolfowitz clambered over rubble to reach a group of women waiting outside an elementary school.

"We are very sorry about what happened. The whole world wants to help you, my country especially," said Wolfowitz, who is touring the countries worst hit by the Indian Ocean tsunami. Sri Lanka announced a reconstruction drive to build 15 new towns on its southern and eastern coasts. The government will help people rebuild in safe areas, or simply construct new towns.

"We were not prepared at all ... to face a disaster like this," said President Chandrika Kumaratunga. "The people of this country faced it effectively, they are in a position to rebuild."
Some Sri Lankans were already rebuilding, defying a government ban to put up houses and hotels close to the shore.

"I'm worried about my family but I'm also worried about the future of my children. This is my business. How else will I protect and feed my children?" said Ranjith Premakumara, 28, rebuilding a guest house just 30 meters (yards) from the beach in the southern town of Paiyagala South.


Relief work rumbled on in Indonesia's Aceh, and one senior international aid official said the province was rebounding so well from the disaster that emergency assistance could wind up fairly quickly. "I think we are fortunate that things are not as bad as we feared," said Patrick Webb, chief of nutrition at the United Nations ' World Food Program (WFP).
"Malnutrition is not widespread. Diseases are not rampant yet," he said in the Acehnese capital, Banda Aceh.


"They are fortunate that there has been this massive response, which will make recovering a lot faster than it ever has got a chance of in Darfur for example, or Afghanistan ."

In Banda Aceh, monsoon rains flooded tsunami-scarred streets as overloaded drainage ditches ceased working. While the half of the city that took the worst damage from the wave remains largely closed, shopkeepers who did open reported good business.

"Even if it happens again, it's just fate. We'll face it. All of our customers were happy to see us open," said Shugino, 49, sitting on a plastic chair in front of his restaurant.

Jakarta officials promised to overhaul the country's relief program amid fears mismanagement and corruption might divert some of the aid dollars pledged by donors around the world. Information Minister Sofyan Djalil said the reorganization would include a "credible" oversight scheme to monitor the huge sums earmarked for Indonesia, long ranked as one of the most corrupt countries in the world.

Indonesia is expected to receive the bulk of more than $7 billion from governments, corporations and individuals pledged for tsunami aid. For many of those affected, however, the tsunami remained a story of bodies and grief.

In Thailand, Prime Minister Goran Persson of Sweden -- which lost hundreds of people -- visited a Buddhist temple turned mortuary with his Norwegian and Finnish counterparts, Kjell Magne Bondevik and Matti Vanhanen. "I'm impressed and I'm also extremely humbled because they're doing a very difficult job here under difficult circumstances," Persson said. The temple houses hundreds of corpses from nearby Khao Lak resort which forensics experts are trying to identify, a crucial step for families left without a body to grieve over.

Thailand saw more than 5,300 people killed in the tsunami, half of them foreign tourists, and tens of thousands of bodies around the region may never be recovered. In Europe, families struggled in legal limbo as they seek to unlock bank accounts, release assets and ensure life insurance is paid for those lost in the disaster.

Carina Fabretat, who works with Swedes affected by the tsunami, said official death registration was important even for people who had accepted that their loved ones were gone.

"They need to end it by getting a death certificate," she said. "Until they have a name on a piece of paper they still have hopes."
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Old 01-19-2005, 11:49 PM
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BBC

The number of people known to have died in last month's Asian tsunami has reached 220,000. The toll increased dramatically after Indonesian officials announced that more than 166,000 had been confirmed dead in their country alone. The latest figure is more than 50,000 higher than the previous total issued by Indonesia's health ministry. Most of the deaths came from the provinces of Aceh and North Sumatra, which were directly hit by the tsunami. UN and Indonesian officials have said the total number of deaths may never be known.

In other developments:

At an international disaster conference in Kobe, Japan, the United Nations humanitarian chief says the UN should take the lead in creating a tsunami early-warning system in the Indian Ocean


India unveils a $628m reconstruction package for mainland areas hit by the tsunami

Sri Lanka's president launches a reconstruction drive worth $3.5bn
The International Labour Organisation (ILO) says that at least one million people have lost their livelihoods in Sri Lanka and Indonesia alone and calls for action to create jobs.

The director of the Indonesian ministry's health affairs department, Doti Indrasanto, said the number of fatalities soared after health officials declared that thousands of people previously listed as missing were dead.

The ministry said it had slashed the number of missing from 77,000 to 6,245.

"We have cross-checked this information and it is correct," Mr Idrasanto said.

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said the final death toll might never be known. "Perhaps we will never know the exact scale of the human casualties," he said.

The BBC's Rachel Harvey in Aceh says that in the provincial capital, Banda Aceh, more than 14% of the population is confirmed dead. She says there are still local districts that have not reported any figures at all, making it seem inevitable that the final death toll will be higher still. Officials retrieving decomposed bodies in Aceh said about 3,500 corpses were being removed each day - nearly four weeks after the disaster. About 800,000 people were made homeless in Aceh and North Sumatra as a result of the disaster.

Relief officials said floods caused by heavy rains were delaying lorries sending supplies to Aceh's provincial capital, Banda Aceh. "Flooding is a bigger problem than security," a spokesman for the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), Chris Lom, told the AFP news agency. He was referring to fears of renewed clashes between Aceh separatists and Indonesian armed forces. On Wednesday, Indonesian Foreign Minister Hassan Wirayuda said he hoped to hold formal peace talks with the Free Aceh Movement (Gam) rebels later this month - the first since May 2003. The Gam has been waging a rebellion against the Jakarta authorities for nearly three decades. But in the wake of the tsunami, both sides agreed to an informal ceasefire to help ease the distribution of aid.
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  #59  
Old 02-20-2005, 08:51 AM
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at the swedish forum you will find pghotos from when the king and queen visited Thiland
victoria will visit asia this spring
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  #60  
Old 03-24-2005, 08:06 AM
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mary and frederik will visit Thailand in april
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