Old powers trying to bring chaos back to Thailand: Prayuth

Martial law will remain in place in Thailand to maintain peace in the country, army said today as the Prime Minister-elect warned of attempts by "old powers" and "influence groups" to plunge the country back into chaos.

PTI| Last Updated: Aug 22, 2014, 22:22 PM IST

Bangkok: Martial law will remain in place in Thailand to maintain peace in the country, army said today as the Prime Minister-elect warned of attempts by "old powers" and "influence groups" to plunge the country back into chaos.

People are now able to lead normal lives and tourists appear to be returning to Thailand, deputy army spokeswoman Colonel Sirijan Nga-thong said, adding that martial law would not be an obstacle for the administration of the country.
Thailand`s army chief, 60-year-old Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha, was yesterday named as the next prime minister after the National Legislative Assembly (NLA) voted 191-0 in his favour in an uncontested race.

Prayuth was widely tipped to become the next prime minister after staging the coup in May this year.
Prayuth said there were still efforts by "old powers and influence groups" to "bring us back to the dysfunctional state we were in".

He did not name any group but added that they were "trying to come back in and change things back to the way they were by using social movements, especially those linked to the poor or those with low income.

"If we let things go on as they did the old way, it is likely that Thailand will have much to suffer in the future. Accordingly, this will also slow down the country`s development," Prayuth said in his weekly TV programme "Returning Happiness to the People" broadcast nationwide.

Meanwhile, the US has expressed hope that the selection of an interim prime minister in Thailand is a step that would lead to the setting up of inclusive democratic institution as well as free and fair election and civilian government.

"We have urged the interim government, once formed, to institute an inclusive reform process that reflects the diversity of views within Thailand, and do remain concerned about the limits on space for freedom of speech and assembly," said Marie Harf, deputy State department spokesperson said.