PM calls on Thai citizens to help APEC delegates have a smooth summit

Thailand’s Prime Minister is calling on Thais to help APEC delegates have a smooth summit by being good hosts. Prayut Chan-o-cha says the kingdom is ready to host the special summit on November 18. According to Thai PBS World, Prayut asked all parties to ensure orderliness throughout the summit and its related meetings.

“This is an event of national importance.”

He furthered his confidence in his country by saying that Thailand is second to none in hosting international conferences, adding that security officials have no intentions of infringing or intimidating people’s rights during the summit. But, anti-government and human rights groups have accused such officials of the exact thing that Prayut says won’t be happening. They say the government has intimidated them and is trying to prevent them from holding protests during the summit. It is not known whether staged protests will, indeed, be allowed during the summit.

As for the ASEAN Summit which wrapped up yesterday, PM Prayut says it was a good opportunity for ASEAN members to discuss various issues. He then claimed that some delegates praised Thailand for its success in a number of areas while expressing his interest in seeing ASEAN countries move forward collectively to help solve conflicts in some of its member countries.

But, as Thailand has chosen to remain neutral in response to the violent coup in Myanmar, the PM had a surprisingly different outlook on Thailand’s involvement. He says Thailand has played an active role in humanitarian efforts for the people of Myanmar, which has seen many civilians seeking temporary refuge in the country. As Thailand is not part of the Geneva Convention, those seeking such refugee status in the country are met with little to no help, as such war refugees have no legal rights in Thailand. Reports of mistreatment by Thai officials towards Burmese refugees have been widespread, including the government shutting down borders with Myanmar when the coup initially occurred.

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Ann Carter

Ann Carter is an award-winning journalist from the United States with over 12 years experience in print and broadcast news. Her work has been featured in America, China and Thailand as she has worked internationally at major news stations as a writer and producer. Carter graduated from the Walter Williams Missouri School of Journalism in the USA.

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