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Charter flights pick back tourists in Thailand

TWO Shanghai-based airlines dispatched an extra 12 charter flights yesterday and today to pick up Chinese tourists trapped in Thailand by the violent protests.

Shanghai Airlines and China Eastern Airlines announced the plan yesterday after the protests were brought to an end, today's Oriental Morning Post reported.

The extra flights were expected to bring back 2,000 tourists.

Shanghai Airlines added four flights to Thailand's capital Bangkok last night, three from Shanghai's Pudong International Airport and one from Tianhe airport in Wuhan City, capital of Hubei Province.

The aircraft, all 160-seat Boeing 737-800 jets, arrived back this morning.

Most of the passengers on the flights to Bangkok were Thai tourists who had arrived in Shanghai last week. All the passengers on the return flights were Chinese tourists who went to Thailand last week.

China Eastern also added eight flights yesterday and today to bring back Chinese tourists, company said yesterday.

Shanghai's tourism authority has ordered a suspension of tours to Thailand following rioting that left two dead and more than 120 injured across Bangkok.

Local travel agencies have postponed or canceled new tours to Thailand.

Shanghai CYTS Tour Corp said it now has 120 local tourists traveling in Thailand and all are safe. The agency said it is in contact with the tourists every day and they will return by Saturday.

Another two tour groups from the Shanghai CITS Group, two groups from the Spring International Travel Co and one from the Shanghai China Travel International Co Ltd are in Thailand and safe.


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