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NEW UPDATES Asean Affairs   5 May 2014  

Abhisit proposes road map for ending political crisis, opening way for reform

Democrat Party leader Abhisit Vejjajiva on Saturday revealed his road map to bringing the country out of political crisis and open the way for political reform, urging all stakeholders to accept the plan.
Mr Abhisit told a press conference about his plan for "Reform under Constitution" after meeting with leading political figures to propose to them his ideas on reform and sounded out their views on how to end the crisis and move the country forward.
According to Mr Abhisit, the caretaker government has to delay the issuing of a Royal Decree on general election set for July 20. After that, the EC must revise and issue regulations for a free and fair election.
The Reform Now Network and the anti-government People's Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) have jointly drafted guidelines for setting up of a national reform council.
The council will be free of any politicians or political parties.
After that a national referendum would be held for the guidelines for the reform council while political parties would join in the campaign for national reform.
At this stage, Mr Abhisit said, caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and her cabinet should resign to open the way for the establishment of an interim government.
The Senate Speaker would be the one charged with selecting and nominating an interim Prime Minister who should be acceptable to all parties.
The interim government would have limited authority, its mission would be only to run the country during the transitional period for the new general election, with no authority to pass any new laws. The interim government would remain in power for about six month while the reform measures were drafted for national referendum.
After the national referendum was completed, a new election would be held within 45-60 days. All political parties would have to promise that they would support the reform measures.
The newly elected government and members of the House of Representatives would have power to run the country normally but under the commitment that they have to finish the reform in accordance with the reform council's guidelines within one year.
After the reform process, which would take one year to complete, a new general election would be held and Thai politics would return to normal.
Mr Abhisit said that he has stressed earlier that no one will get 100 per cent of what they wanted in his proposal. He added that to show his sincerity and lack of any hidden agenda, that he would not take any post in the entire process.
He would proposed the plan to the caretaker government and PDRC on Tuesday and wanted them to carefully consider the plan.
Appearing in a video clip posted on YouTube on April 24, Mr Abhisit has volunteered to spearhead efforts to break the current political deadlock.
During the past 10 days of his shuttle diplomacy, he has met Justice Ministry Permanent Secretary Kittipong Kittayarak; Supreme Commander Gen Thanasak Patimaprakorn; Election Commission members; former prime minister and chief adviser to the leader of Chart Thai Pattana Party, Banharn Silapa-archa; and Chart Pattana Party's chief adviser Suwat Liptapanlop.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More






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