Thai health minister ‘sorry’ for saying ‘f*cking farangs’ without masks should be kicked out

Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul greets police officers at Lumphini Park. Photo: Department of Disease Control / FB
Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul greets police officers at Lumphini Park. Photo: Department of Disease Control / FB

Thailand’s top health official apologized for using a vulgarity to disparage white tourists Friday morning and demand they should be kicked out of the country.

Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul on Friday afternoon apologized for his enraged comments during a photo op this morning at which he was handing out face masks and noticed some foreigners refusing them. 

He told reporters that “farangs,” a catch-all term for white tourists, should be deported for not wearing masks during the current coronavirus outbreak.

“These fucking farangs. These farang tourists. The embassies should be notified and the public should be informed too. We are giving away the masks, but they refused to take them. They need to be kicked out of Thailand,” Anutin said while giving an interview to the media at BTS Siam, where the media had been invited to film him personally hand out masks to commuters.

“The Chinese, Asian people, they all take the masks. But those Europeans… how frustrating,” he continued.

In his online apology, he said the foreigners “showed disgust at Thais.”

“I apologize that today I kinda ‘lost myself’ to some Europeans who showed disgust at Thais who wear masks and refused to cooperate to wear the masks,” he wrote on Facebook.

Anutin is the head of the Bhumjaithai Party, which came to power by backing legal cannabis and Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-o-cha.

Thai officials have been playing down the extent of the outbreak which has led to at least 25 confirmed infections in the kingdom, an increasing number of which are locally transmitted as the virus spreads. None has involved any tourists of European descent.


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Reader Interactions


  1. Sorry?

    How did this medically inept fool ever become the Health Minister? Bad enough that he is lacking in proper grammar and communicative English, but it is a tragedy that he knows nothing about the medical science behind wearing a surgical face mask.

    All he did was prove that Asians have a herd mentality. One starts down the wrong path and the rest follow like cattle.

    Wearing a surgical face mask does not prevent any virus from entering your respiratory system. First, the virus is small enough to penetrate the fibers of any mask that you buy from a pharmacy. Second, none of the masks you buy provide an air tight seal around your nose and mouth.

    But “IF” you are coughing and sneezing, then by all means…wear a mask. That is what surgical masks were designed to do.

    A surgeon wears the mask to protect you in case he or she coughs or sneezes during surgery. Surgeons don’t wear a mask to protect themselves. They do sometimes wear a face shield to protect against blood or bodily fluids from splashing into their eyes.

    Wearing a mask, if you are not sick, can actually make you sick. Exhaling warm, moist air into the mask creates a perfect environment for bacterial growth. Your hands touch door handles, escalator hand rails, elevator buttons and host of other germ laden items during the course of your day. Then you unconsciously touch your face or nose because of an itch. In the process you also touch your face mask. Now you have transferred those germs to a warm, moist environment where they can grow and you will be inhaling them into your respiratory tract.

    Stop listening to the medical supply industry that just wants to sell their products or to so-called health experts who don’t have a clue about who should actually be wearing a mask.

  2. The minister should actually know that the masks don’t really help. They are just good to appease an increasingly hysterical public.

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