ICG, elections and crisis

11 04 2011

The International Crisis Group has released its latest report on Thailand (Thailand: The Calm Before Another Storm? It’s a 20 page PDF). PPT hasn’t read it yet, but AFP reports on it, saying: “Thailand should allow foreign observers to monitor its upcoming election, which could trigger fresh political violence and mass protests…”. Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban has already said he opposes this and doesn’t respect farang. He opposes this incursion against Thailand’s sovereignty. Really he just doesn’t want any scrutiny.

ICG responds that “Xenophobic reaction to electoral observation by foreigners is counter-productive…”. The report is correct when it observes that “Thailand has never officially allowed monitors to operate in polling stations during its elections, but the Asian Network for Free Elections (ANFREL) has been allowed to work in the country during the last two votes.”

The ICG observes that: “Anger or any sense of injustice over how the new government is formed could be the rallying cry for renewed mass protests…. Even if the elections are deemed generally credible, it will be a challenge for all sides to accept the results.”



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