Foreign Minister shrugs off lack of invite to democracy summit

PHOTO: Flickr/МИД России

Thailand’s Foreign Minister has shrugged off the fact that Thailand has not been invited to a democracy summit being hosted by the US. Thai PBS World reports that Don Pramudwinai says the event is, “nothing more than pure politics”. The summit is scheduled to take place from December 9-10 and Thailand has been left off the guest list. Controversially, Taiwan has not.

During a House of Representatives session, Don was asked by opposition MP Suthin Klangsaeng from the Pheu Thai party why Thailand had not been invited. He responded by dismissing the event and pointing out that not all ASEAN countries are on the guest list. He then suggested that perhaps it was a good thing Thailand had not been invited.

“It’s nothing more than pure politics being played by some countries against one another. Some countries which have democratic elections were not invited either. Maybe, we should be glad that we were not invited. This could turn out to be a double-edged sword.”

The US State Department has invited Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines to participate in the event, which plans to address diminishing human rights and freedoms worldwide. In total, 110 participants have made the guest list, but China and Russia have not. Not only that, but China has been left furious by the US inviting Taiwan to participate, with Zhao Lijian from China’s Foreign Ministry issuing a statement confirming the government’s opposition.

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“U.S. actions only go to show democracy is just a cover and a tool for it to advance its geopolitical objectives, oppress other countries, divide the world and serve its own interests.”

Taiwan has accepted the invitation to the summit and will be represented by its de-facto ambassador in Washington, Hsiao Bi-khim, along with Digital Minister Audrey Tang.

“Our country’s invitation to participate in the ‘Summit for Democracy’ is an affirmation of Taiwan’s efforts to promote the values of democracy and human rights over the years.”

SOURCE: Thai PBS World

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