Thailand’s Navy needs to get ship-shape

Ongoing debate over submarine purchase plan.

Thailand’s Navy needs to get ship-shape

Kavi Chongkittavorn

JUST IMAGINE these two scenarios: an aircraft falling from the sky into the Gulf of Thailand, or a large liner sinking in the Andaman Sea. What would be the response from the Royal Thai Navy? The answer is clear: nothing.

Fortunately, Malaysia’s MH370 and South Korea’s Saewol incidents occurred outside Thai territorial waters. Otherwise, the Royal Thai Navy (RTN) would have been exposed to the core – that they did not have the capacity or capability to carry out the search and rescue in the middle of two oceans, let alone perform the much more sophisticated underwater operations. Their ability for search and rescue is extremely limited, subject to coastal areas and inland waterways. They have a small group of divers.

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