Pattaya Daily News

24 April 2009 :: 12:04:22 pm 38125

Prime Minister Lifts State Of Emergency Decree in Bangkok, Capital Region

BANGKOK, April 24 - Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva has lifted implementation of the State of Emergency Decree in Bangkok and surrounding areas effective Friday.
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The prime minister announced the move during his closing speech at a joint session of Parliament called to find a solution to end the political crisis. He said his decision was made in order to show that his government had a sincere intention to push ahead reconciliation after the violence protests in Bangkok and some provinces.

He also told reporters after the meeting that he had consulted with Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban who is responsible for security matters and Bangkok Metropolitan Police Commissioner Pol. Lt-Gen. Worapong Chewpreecha before deciding to lift the decree.

Mr. Abhisit voiced confidence that the political situation will be stable and the overall atmosphere will improve.

The prime minister imposed the State of Emergency Decree in the capital and five surrounding provinces on April 12 after anti-government protests in Pattaya and Bangkok had forced the government to postpone the ASEAN summit with its dialogue partners. Two people were killed and 123 injured as troops clashed with protesters during operations to disperse the violent protest which paralysed traffic in the capital during the Songkran Festival.

The three week protest at Government House mounted by the United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD) ended on April 14 when the movement’s leaders ended their protest and surrendered to the authorities fearing that the troops would force the protesters to disperse and the Red Shirts would sustain physical injuries. Mr. Abhisit said he proposed that Parliament establish a fact-finding panel to probe the transparency of the military operation to disperse the protesters. All parties concerned should be able to participate, he said.

As for the accusation that the government applied double standard between the two groups of protesters, the prime minister said he encouraged the members of parliament and senators to comment regarding legal aspects to find solution. He affirmed that the government was pleased to cooperate.

The prime minister said he is ready to dissolve Parliament for fresh elections when the concerned rules were set and when the right time has come.

Mr. Abhisit also said the government would like the chance to host ASEAN and its dialogue partners again, possibly in June in the southern resort province of Phuket. (TNA)

Reporter : PDN staff   Photo : Internet   Category : Thailand News

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