Thai capital Bangkok to lift more Covid-19 restrictions; Covid-19 total now above 218, 000

BANGKOK, June 20 (Xinhua): Restrictions over Covid-19 will be further eased in the Thai capital of Bangkok beginning next week, local authorities said Sunday.

From Monday, convenience stores in Bangkok, which previously were allowed to open between 11pm and 4am, will be able to open around the clock, while swimming pools, science parks, art and cultural exhibition centers as well as libraries and stadiums will be allowed to reopen, according to a statement issued by the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA).

However, any gatherings of more than 50 people at those venues must apply for permission in advance from the BMA.

Bangkok recorded 836 new cases of Covid-19 on Sunday, accounting for more than 25 percent of the 3, 682 daily cases reported nationwide.

Following an acceleration of the vaccine rollout, the BMA had previously allowed parks, beauty salons, spa and massage parlors and tattoo parlors to reopen, and allowed restaurants to provide dine-in services for longer time and serve more customers.

As of Saturday, the Southeast Asian country has administered more than 7.5 million doses of vaccines. Thailand aims to vaccinate about 70 percent of its population by the end of the year.

The country also approved the Sinopharm vaccine for emergency use in May, making it the fifth following the approvals of AstraZeneca, Sinovac, Johnson & Johnson and Moderna vaccines. A batch of China's Sinopharm vaccines landed in the Thai capital of Bangkok on Sunday.

Thailand aims to vaccinate about 70 per cent of its nearly 70 million population by the end of the year. As of Saturday, it has administered more than 7.5 million doses of vaccines.

On Sunday, the country reported 3, 682 new cases, taking the total case tally to 218, 131, with more than 85 percent of the infections confirmed since the third wave of outbreak began in early April.

Death toll from the viral disease increased by 20 to reach 1, 629, according to the Centre for the Covid-19 Situation Administration. - Xinhua

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