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Five weeks after the murders of Hannah Witheridge and David Miller on Koh Tao Thaweesak Inthaphrom, chief of the Koh Phangan district office received a letter from Govenor Chatpong Chatphuti ordering him to prohibit any beach parties on the islands throughout the province. The only party that will not be affected by the ban is the Full Moon party on Haad Rin Beach in Koh Phanang, due to its worldwide appeal and popularity among tourists.
Mr. Chatpong said that the reason behind the ban is to put a stop to the illegal activity and vice that has been risking the nations reputation, he went on to say that events such as the half moon and black moon party were often responsible for problems affecting tourism and Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-ocha last week said it was time to restore order on the province’s islands. Reports suggest that part of the problem is that many of these parties are held in secluded areas where the police are unable to offer party goers much protection.
The order banning beach parties has been relayed by the Koh Phangan district office to various agencies and the police have removed posters put up around the islands advertising the events, this includes the coming Black Moon, Jungle Moon and Experience Moon parties.
Prawut Thawornsiri, spokesman of the National Police Office, said police chief Pol Gen Somyot Pumpanmuang had instructed police officers across the country to ensure the safety of tourists as Thailand heads into high season and said that better records must also be kept of the number of people arriving as well as where they stay during their visit, this kind of information is very useful for the tourist police who handle security in the event of security issues. Volunteers are also being recruited to help the police maintain order in popular destinations.