Abhisit (again) claims he did not order any shootings

30 08 2011

Former Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva is in the news again, claiming “… he did not order the army to shoot at people…”. The Bangkok Post has the report of his “fiery” meeting with a Senate committee investigating the deaths of 92 in April and May 2010.

Interestingly, the Post reporters – Mongkol Bangprapa and Wassana Nanuam – seem on Abhisit’s side, stating that “most of the panel members asked leading questions based on their personal assumptions…”. There’s no evidence presented for this claim.

Abhisit again makes these claims and denials:

He said he did not order the army to shoot at people, but casualties occurred because soldiers who manned security checkpoints were attacked by unidentified gunmen and they had to act in self-defence.

“How can you end a protest if you use water cannons to disperse protesters who return fire with a series of M79 grenades?”

He also noted that the protesters seized a number of weapons and ammunition from security officers during the unrest.

He also questioned what the goverment and army would gain from shooting dead six protesters inside Wat Pathum Wanaram and called for the panel to look at the motives of the culprits.

Those who follow events in Thailand have repeatedly heard such claims. Abhisit’s basic point is that he did nothing that anyone could hold against him into the future. The blame must be apportioned to others. He blames “men in black” and “terrorists” amongst the red shirts.

Perhaps it is the military leadership? But, then, General Prayuth Chan-ocha has recently said that he was willing to take responsibility for his actions. While we doubt the extent of this commitment, at least Prayuth has said something that Abhisit seems unable to utter. But then again, it was General Anupong Paojinda in charge of the Army at the time.

Perhaps he wants to blame security boss and former Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban? At least Suthep has admitted that leaked documents showing he ordered the use of live rounds against protesters are genuine. They seem to show that the order was given before any military or police were attacked by any “men in black.” Suthep may well become Abhisit’s scapegoat.

We suspect that Abhisit is again being a bit too smart, apparently believing that his signature may never be found on orders to shoot protesters. Yet he was the prime minister and bears responsibility for the actions of his Army.


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4 responses

12 04 2013
Soldiers and murdered protesters | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] as if he is an innocent bystander demanding “truth.”  Of course, the disingenuous Abhisit claims he ordered no crackdown; somehow the prime minister was just along for the ride when such decisions were made, presumably […]

12 04 2013
Soldiers and murdered protesters | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] is cited as if he is an innocent bystander demanding “truth.”  Of course, the disingenuous Abhisit claims he ordered no crackdown; somehow the prime minister was just along for the ride when such decisions were made, presumably […]

29 07 2013
Heard it before | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] And again, on May 2010: […]

29 07 2013
Heard it before | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] And again, on May 2010: […]




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