BANGKOK, Jan. 6 (Xinhua) -- Thailand's Labour Ministry is worried about the well-being of about 2,600 Thai workers now employed in the Gaza Strip as fierce fighting between Israeli troops and the militant group Hamas continues without any sign of ending soon, Deputy Permanent Secretary for Labour Pornchai Yooprayong said Tuesday.
Pornchai said there are about 2,600 Thai workers employed at 27 sites in the area.
The Ministry's Employment Department has been instructed not to dispatch new batches of Thai workers to Gaza for safety reasons, said Pornchai. So far all Thai workers there are safe, he said.
Fighting intensified when Israel sent ground forces into the Gaza Strip after several days of air raids against Hamas. More than 500 Palestinians have been killed, including more than 100 civilians, according to United Nations figures. Nine Israelis have died since the operation began on Dec. 27.