Ban Ki-moon visit worries army chief

25 10 2010

In an MCOT report, it seems that army chief General Prayuth Chan-ocha is worried about the visit by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. Prayuth has decreed that there will be “no political gatherings are allowed in the Thai capital during the visit of  on Tuesday but representatives can instead present a letter to the UN chief.” He’s worried about red shirts demonstrating.

Delivering a letter is all that the red shirts have said that they planned to do. As mentioned in The Nation the red shirts are “preparing to petition … Ban Ki-moon over the killings of 91 people in the military crackdowns of April and May during his visit…”. Jatuporn Promphan said: “We just want to tell the UN secretary-general the truth about what happened in this country…”. They also wanted to urge the release of political prisoners in Thailand. Only about 10 representatives intended to see Mr. Ban and they “do not look for any response whatsoever from the UN chief. They just want to tell their story to the international community…”.

But the political dinosaur that he is, General Prayuth flopped back to 1960s military government-style ideas, saying “security measures have been prepared as Bangkok is still under a state of emergency.” He said that a letter could be presented, but all gatherings are banned by the Centre for the Resolution of the Emergency Situation (CRES). The army will be on standby if there are any political demonstrations. Sounding very 1960s, he said: “This is the image of Thailand. Please do not demonstrate and cause any disturbance to the public…”.

In any case, for Prayuth, the red shirts are just trouble makers. He stated that red shirts “should consider whether it is appropriate to hand in such letter as this is internal affairs and the army had strictly followed the law.” That’s the point really. The red shirts see no progress on the investigations into the murders in April and May. A full 6 months after the first deaths and the Abhsit Vejjajiva government has come up with no results at all from its so-called investigations.

And, as an aside, it is interesting that CRES and the military are making government-sounding pronouncements. Has the front of civilian leadership begun to crumble?



One response

26 10 2010
Jurrasic Prayuth « Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] Take Action Ban Ki-moon visit worries army chief […]

%d bloggers like this: