NewsAsiaSretthaThavisin becomes Prime Minister; Former Premier Shinawatra returns from exile

    SretthaThavisin becomes Prime Minister; Former Premier Shinawatra returns from exile

    This Tuesday, August 22, the Thai Parliament elected Srettha Thavisin as the new prime minister after three months of crisis and political paralysis in the country since the elections last May. With him, the Pheu Thai party returns to power. Meanwhile, former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, exiled for 15 years after the first coup d’etat by the military junta, returned to the nation. The politician was jailed just hours after his return to Thailand, accused of corruption, and his future is uncertain.

    3 min

    Srettha Thavisin is the new Prime Minister of Thailand. After receiving the support of Parliament during the vote on Tuesday, August 22, the former construction magnate will be at the head of the Government after more than three months of legislative blockade since the May elections, three months ago.

    “I am very honored after the approval of Parliament today to become prime minister. I thank all the members of the House of Representatives and senators who have kindly placed their trust in me. I feel very honored to be able to serve all Thais,” said the new president through social networks.

    The victory of Srettha, candidate of the Pheu Thai party, opens the door to a new coalition government that will include pro-military parties and even members of the military junta – which staged a coup in 2014 and was in power until 2019. —despite the fact that the new prime minister had promised to keep them out of government.

    Now the businessman and billionaire has justified himself by arguing that it is necessary to “form a government” as soon as possible to deal with issues such as the economy and reduce inequality in Thai society.

    “I will carry out my duties to the best of my ability. I will work tirelessly to improve the standard of living for all Thai people,” Srettha told reporters at the Pheu Thai match headquarters.

    The former president of luxury real estate company Sansiri now has a difficult task: to form and hold together a coalition that includes parties created by the army, which overthrew the governments of his party – Pheu Thai – in the coups of 2006 and 2014. .

    The return of Thaksin Shinawatra: jailed after 15 years in exile

    Although Srettha is the country’s new prime minister, another more familiar face of Pheu Thai made headlines in the Thai press on Tuesday: Thaksin Shinawatra. The politician and former prime minister of Thailand, deposed after the 2006 military coup, returned to Bangkok airport on Tuesday after a 15-year exile.

    A few hours before his party was to return to power, he was escorted to the Supreme Court and jailed to serve an eight-year prison sentence for alleged abuse of power and conflict of interest. Upon his arrival at Don Muang airport, hundreds of his supporters were waiting to welcome him to the country.

    “No matter what country I am in, wherever I go, I only love Thaksin and have always loved him,” Boonying Pim-Makaed, from the northeastern Loei province, told Reuters.

    Despite the fact that Thaivisin went directly from home to prison, the return of the former prime minister is not accidental: he did so on the same day that Parliament elected Srettha Thaivisin as prime minister, a candidate proposed by the Pheu Thai party – the family Shinawatra controls. In other words, now his family is allied with the pro-military parties. Something that some political scientists accuse could mean his early release, a thesis that both Thaksin and Pheu Thai have denied.

    Former Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra greets supporters with his daughters after landing at Bangkok’s Don Mueang airport on August 22, 2023. © Manan Vatsyayana, AFP

    Thaksin is a former telecommunications magnate and owner of the Manchester City football club, and was accused by the Army of corruption, cronyism and disloyalty to the Thai monarchy. A fate similar to that suffered by his sister, Yingluck Shinawatra, just a few years later, in 2014. Both deny all the charges against them and say they are politically motivated.

    Thaksin is the most famous politician of the Thai democracy. The former policeman and businessman won the hearts and loyalty of millions of working-class Thais with populist gifts like cash or social improvements like universal public health. Now, after Thavisin’s appointment, his party and his family are back in power.

    With EFE and Reuters

    Source: France 24

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    This post is posted by Awutar staff members. Awutar is a global multimedia website. Our Email: [email protected]


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