"We have to be more careful of Westerners than Asians"
In a series of now-deleted tweets on 12 March, Thai health minister Anutin Charnvirakul said the threat of Covid-19 comes more from westerners than Asians.
“It’s winter right now in Europe so these people are fleeing the cold, in Thailand,” Charnvirakul wrote. “Many are dressed dirtily and never shower. As hosts we have to be careful.”
Charnvirakul then went on to state that ‘farangs’ – Europeans/foreigners are being reckless in their behaviour.
“Today I’m in Chiang Mai,” he wrote. “There’s pretty much no more Chinese tourists, only farangs. More than 90% of Thais wear masks, but not a single farang has one. This is why there’re so many infections in their countries.”
The 53-year-old politician also warned local people, “we have to be more careful of Westerners than Asians.”
In February, Charnvirakul was accused of racism for suggesting that foreigners who do not wear face masks “should be kicked out” of Thailand.
Thailand currently has 934 Coronavirus cases with 4 deaths.
In related news, ‘Kung Flu Fighting’ video parodies have been plaguing the internet.
Thai Public Health Min Anutin Charnvirakul was handing out surgical masks today for people to protect themselves against the Novel #Coronavirus. Apparently some foreign tourists didn’t take them, which led to this unusual outburst by him suggesting they “should be kicked out.” pic.twitter.com/UcVJtYCqeM
— Saksith Saiyasombut (@SaksithCNA) February 7, 2020