Surayud, Prem, accusations and responses

28 03 2009

It is reported (Bangkok Post, 28 March 2009: “Red-shirts burn Prem’s effigy”) that a group of red-shirt protesters went to the house of Privy Council President General Prem Tinsulanond “to demand that he and ex-premier Surayud Chulanont take responsibility for allegedly being behind the military coup that toppled Thaksin Shinawatra. They also burnt Gen Prem’s effigy before returning to join the rally at the Government House.”

Earlier, former prime minister appointed in 2006 by the military junta and privy councilor General Surayud Chulanont is reported (Bangkok Post, 28 March 2009: “Surayud to clarify Thaksin’s allegations”) to be preparing to hold a press conference following accusations by deposed Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra that he and Prem were involved in machinations that led to the 2006 military coup.

Update: Surayud has now held his press conference, with a report in The Nation (28 March 2009: “I’m no coup plotter: Surayud”). Surayud is reported to have said that “he had met certain senior judges a few months before the coup but had merely wanted to hear their views about the country’s political situation at the time. He added that the judiciary had then been expected to help ease the country’s problems.” He added, “It would have been stupid of me to discuss plotting a coup with judges. I would have been better off discussing it with military commanders…”.

There were earlier allegations about palace-related people being involved with judges at various times prior to the coup, although it was usually considered that this related to General Prem. Following Surayud’s statement, it now seems that the Privy Council was indeed deeply involved with the supposedly independent judiciary.

Surayud is also reported as claiming that “most of Thaksin’s allegations against him ‘were not based on fact’. [Surayud] said he had presented his side of the story and it was up to the public whether to believe him or Thaksin.”

At this moment, with only limited reporting of the press conference, it is unclear to PPT what Surayud’s side of the story actually is, apart from his repeated denial of involvement in the events leading to the 2006 coup.



2 responses

30 03 2009
New: Surayud, the Privy Council, Piya Malakul and the 2006 coup « Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] Post report has more details than the one in The Nation, mentioned by PPT in an earlier post, and reveals that “he had met prominent judges at the Sukhumvit residence of Piya Malakul, […]

6 04 2011
More on coups, the military and influential people | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] is to Piya Malaul and his coup planning buddies from 2006, including privy councilors (see here and here). The rumor gets even more remarkable – according to the Post’s unnamed […]

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