Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva has extended his greetings to his Muslim countrymen here and in their country who, he said, had wholeheartedly devoted themselves for the observance of the holy month of Ramadan.
“I wish our Muslim brothers every success in their endeavour during the sacred month of Ramadan and hope that the results of such merits would lead to greater happiness, success and fulfilment of your wishes. Ramadan Mubarak,” Vejjajiva said in a message sent through the Royal Thai Embassy in Qatar.
The Thai ambassador to Qatar, Suvat Chiparant, who is himself a Muslim, said the eight-month-old Vejjajiva administration had special concern for the estimated seven million Thai Muslims, mostly living in the southern part of their country, and it had extended development support to make their lives better.
In Qatar, there are close to 300 Muslims among the estimated 10,000 Thais living and working here.
The Vejjajiva administration recently launched a special e-passport system at the Southern Border Provinces Administrative Centre (SBPAC) for the faithful to get a chance to make the Hajj pilgrimage.
Already, hundreds of Thai Muslims, especially the elderly, have made use of the e-passport system, which offers them a chance of a lifetime to undertake the journey to Makkah.
Ten journalists from the Middle East and North Africa witnessed the launch of the e-passport system at the SBPAC in Pattani province during their recent familiarisation trip to Thailand where they saw old Thai Muslims in their 60s and 70s having their passports processed.
“The act of fasting is a perseverance and self-restraint which gives strength to both body and mind. This would foster one’s awareness and understanding of the hardship of the less fortunate others, thus creating compassion and purifying one’s heart,” Vejjajiva said in his message.
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