BANGKOK: Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej insisted in an address to the nation on Radio Thailand this morning that he would not step down, quashing widespread expectations that he would finally resign.
Samak has been driven into a tight corner, suffering two blows in a row yesterday. The first came when Army chief Anupong Paochinda told him that the military would not use force to disperse anti-government protesters from Government House, despite Tuesday’s declaration of a state of emergency. The second blow came when Foreign Minister Tej Bunnag resigned. The two events spawned intense rumours last night that Samak was ready to call it a day.
Samak had expected tough action against the protesters. But the soft approach of the military deprived him of his sword to bring down the PAD.
People Power Party MP Panya Sripanya had said it was possible that his party would press Samak to step down rather than dissolve the lower House. The party’s MPs from the northeastern region will hold a meeting today to take a stand over the situation.
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