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Thai New Year celebrated in Kaohsiung despite rain

TAIPEI -- It was a soggy holiday festival for hundreds of migrant workers and immigrants from Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia, who threw water at one another during the traditional Thai New Year celebration in Kaohsiung, southern Taiwan, yesterday.

Participants grabbed buckets and water guns at the Songkran festival, held at a riverside park in Gangshan District, and sprayed one another with water, as others enjoyed singing and dancing.

The event, held by the city government's labor affairs department, also features Thai monks praying for migrant workers and a Southeast Asian food fair.

The number of Thai workers in Kaohsiung stands at 2,730, out of 38,000 Southeast Asians working in the southern city, while the number of Thai immigrants married to Taiwanese spouses in the southern city has reached 700, out of a total of 57,000 from Southeast Asia.

The Songkran festival is celebrated in Thailand as the traditional New Year's Day from April 13-15.

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