Connect with us

Thailand

US brands Yingluck impeachment ‘politically driven’, calls to lift martial law

Legacy Phuket Gazette

Published

 on 

US brands Yingluck impeachment ‘politically driven’, calls to lift martial law | Thaiger

PHUKET MEDIA WATCH

– Thailand news selected by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

US: Impeachment ‘politically driven’, calls to lift martial law
The Nation / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: The United States yesterday branded the former prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra’s impeachment as being “politically driven” and called on the junta to lift martial law as well as push for “inclusive” reform toward democracy.

US Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Daniel Russel made the comment during an address at Chulalongkorn University yesterday after meeting with Yingluck, Democrat leader Abhisit Vejjajiva and Foreign Minister Tanasak Patimapragorn to exchange views on Thailand’s political situation.

“The perception of fairness is important,” he said. “I’ll be blunt here: When an elected leader is

imageDaniel Russel, US Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs.

deposed, impeached by the authorities that implemented the coup, and then targeted with criminal charges while basic democratic processes and institutions are interrupted, the international community is left with the impression that these steps could be politically driven”.

The junta-installed National Legislative Assembly (NLA) voted overwhelmingly to impeach Ms Yingluck and the anti-graft body pressed criminal charges on her for negligence of corruption in the rice-pledging scheme.

Former foreign minister Surapong Tovichakchaikul, who was with Ms Yingluck in the meeting with Mr Russel, said “we told the US official that Ms Yingluck’s political fate will not be different from that of her brother Thaksin Shinawatra”.

Self-exiled Thaksin was toppled by a coup in 2006 and fled from prosecution over corruption charges.

Mr Russel is the highest-ranking US official to visit Thailand after the May 22 military coup that brought down the Yingluck government. The Thailand stopover is part of his Southeast Asia trip, which includes the Philippines, Malaysia and Cambodia.

Mr Russel also called on the junta to lift martial law, which has been in place since the coup.

“Ending martial law throughout the country and removing restrictions on freedom of speech and assembly are important steps as part of a genuinely inclusive reform process that reflects the broad diversity of views within the country,” he said.

“We are particularly concerned that the political process does not represent all elements of Thai society,” he said. “We are not dictating the political path that Thailand should follow to get back to democracy, or taking sides in Thai politics. But an inclusive process promotes political reconciliation, which in turn, is key to long-term stability.

“The alternative – a narrow process – risks leaving many Thai people feeling excluded from the political system.”

The same message was also conveyed to the government during his meeting yesterday with Thai Foreign Minister Tanasak.

“The two held constructive discussions and reaffirmed continuity in relations in all dimensions,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Sek Wannamethee told reporters.

Mr Tanasak briefed Russel on the latest political developments here and stressed the government’s full commitment to proceed with the road map for reform.

The minister also updated Mr Russel on the progress of measures to suppress human trafficking after the US downgraded Thailand to Tier 3 last year.

The government will submit its report on the human trafficking situation to Washington by the end of this month, Mr Sek said.

Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha explained that Mr Russel did not pay him a courtesy call because he did not approve of how he came to power.

“But we have to separate trade and martial law, as well as economic matters and disagreement [over political issues],” the PM said. “Some countries might disagree with this government, but we still trade with them.”

Meanwhile, in a meeting with Mr Russel, former prime minister Abhisit talked about a referendum on the new charter. From the Democrat Party’s point of view, the junta-sponsored charter would be widely accepted by the people if it goes through the referendum, said deputy party leader Kiat Sittheeamorn, who was also at the meeting.

— Phuket Gazette Editors

 

Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forum
🔔 Subscribe to our daily newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram

image

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Tourism2 hours ago

Alcohol ban predicted to damage Thailand’s reopening, reputation

Crime3 hours ago

Woman who cut safety rope of workers offers feeble excuse

Video3 hours ago

Thailand News Today | Dirty gloves probe, Bocelli & Lisa, ASEAN fallout | October 27

Sponsored11 hours ago

Top 5 dental clinics by Dental Corporations PLC in Thailand

Welcome back to Thailand!

Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in Thailand - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages!

Coronavirus (Covid-19)4 hours ago

Police seize Covid-19 antiviral drugs allegedly stolen by hospital manager

Thailand4 hours ago

Student dies after receiving second Covid-19 vaccine shot

Coronavirus (Covid-19)4 hours ago

Foreign Ministry denies blocking Poland’s donation of vaccines

image
Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Thailand4 hours ago

Travellers now exempt from quarantine advised to directly contact AQ hotels for refund

Crime5 hours ago

Legal proceedings expected this week for “Joe Ferrari” death in custody case

Coronavirus (Covid-19)6 hours ago

Wednesday Covid Update: 8,452 new cases; provincial totals

Bangkok6 hours ago

Police bust Bangkok pub serving alcohol, 61 arrested

Bangkok6 hours ago

Russell Crowe bids Bangkok goodbye after much-praised tweets

Thailand7 hours ago

Thai government forms panel to probe the export of used medical gloves

ASEAN7 hours ago

Myanmar no-show a focus as ASEAN summit gets underway

Drugs7 hours ago

Police arrest 3 vans in Korat with 1.82 tonnes of marijuana

Thailand7 hours ago

Sedatives and painkillers, Thai new year – 3 million USD on 2 people | Thaiger Bites | Ep. 47

Thailand1 month ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism8 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism8 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism8 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Trending