- Dabei seit
- Reaktion erhalten
Zu Ehren HMtK, wurden 98 ausländische Häftlinge amnestiert.
98 foreigners free from Thai prisons
Bangkok - King Bhumibol Adulyadej's 75th birthday, as part of an amnesty granted to about 8 000 convicts nationwide.
"There were 98 foreign convicts from 27 different nations freed today, most for illegal entry, over-staying their visas, and using fake documents," said an immigration official.
African nationals accounted for the largest group among those released, including 25 from Liberia, four from Sierra Leone, three from Cameroon, two Nigerians, two Ghanians, and one each from the Ivory Coast and Mali.
Among the others were 15 Vietnamese, eight Chinese, seven Myanmar nationals and six Pakistanis, as well as one each from France, Japan and Singapore.
Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra presided over the release of 5 000 convicts at a ceremony in a Bangkok stadium. They were serving time for failure to pay fines for a variety of offences.
Provincial governors held similar events at jails across the country.
In his birthday speech to the nation, King Bhumibol urged the prisoners, particularly those convicted of drug crimes, not to offend again.
"It is good to release them, but they should be told why they have been jailed and they should not commit wrong-doing again," he told an audience at Chitralada Palace.
Beloved and respected by his subjects, King Bhumibol is the world's longest-reigning monarch having ascended to the throne in 1946. He was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, on December 5, 1927.
Among events to celebrate his 75th birthday on Thursday, hundreds of thousands of people are expected to join Thaksin and his cabinet ministers in a candle-lit vigil at a park near the Grand Palace.
Although the king's birthday is a major event every year in Thailand, more elaborate commemorations were held three years ago to mark his 72nd birthday which is a particularly auspicious age according to the Buddhist calendar.