Hundreds of thousands of police officers in tight security effort for New Year holiday

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The officers will join Army personnel and administrative officials to staff checkpoints, patrol high-risk locations nationwide and form rapid-response units.

MORE THAN 100,000 policemen will provide security during the New Year Festival from December 31 to January 3, authorities said yesterday.

However, national police chief Pol General Chakthip Chaijinda said intelligence agencies were not aware of any groups planning attacks during the period.

The officers will join Army personnel and administrative officials to staff checkpoints, patrol high-risk locations nationwide and form rapid-response units.

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Chakthip held a two-hour video conference with provincial police chiefs from regions 1 to 9 and officials from the Southern Border Provinces Police Operation Centre.

He assigned deputies Pol General Chalermkiat Srivorakan and Pol General Dechnarong Suticharnbancha to oversee public property and traffic safety, while deputy Pol General Srivara Ransibrahmanakul will oversee national security matters.

Chakthip said police would continue the “Fak Ban Wai Kub Tam Ruad”, or “leave houses to police care”, project during the holiday period.

Meanwhile, National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) deputy spokeswoman Colonel Sirichan Ngathong said the NCPO had instructed security officials to assist holidaymakers travelling to the provinces to celebrate New Year, as well as to set up checkpoints and stop drunk drivers.

Those found to have driven after drinking alcohol would see their driver’s licence seized and cars impounded, she warned.

But drivers whose cars are impounded would be able to retrieve their vehicles after the holiday ends. The measure was implemented by the army and police during Songkran and the previous New Year.

She said the NCPO would also form rapid-response units to deal with emergencies. People crossing borders during the period will also face more screening, Sirichan said.

-The Nation