Thaksin urges Thai PM to pull back troops, restart talks
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Last Updated: Friday, May 14, 2010, 22:26
Bangkok: Thailand's fugitive ex-premier Thaksin Shinawatra called on the government on Friday to pull back troops and restart negotiations with his "Red Shirt" supporters after deadly clashes in Bangkok.

"The government's actions clearly constitute grave infringement of human rights and criminal offences for which the Prime Minister, the deputy Prime Minister and all concerned must be responsible," Thaksin said in a statement released by his legal adviser in Bangkok.

He urged Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva to order troops back to their barracks, revoke the state of emergency in place in parts of the country and immediately reopen talks with protesters to reach a peaceful solution.

He called on Abhisit to "negotiate with all sides in the country to find an acceptable and genuine reconciliation plan to establish true democracy and justice in Thailand and move the country forward."

"I believe that (a) political solution still exists for Thailand and the prime minister is able to prevent more casualties and save our country," Thaksin said, after one person died and 12 were injured in clashes on Friday.

"All this is dependent on his decision and he can choose between violent means and peaceful means, or between his position and the lives of innocent people," he added.

Thaksin was ousted in a bloodless military coup in 2006 and lives in self-imposed exile to avoid a jail term for corruption. Many Red Shirts seek the return of the former premier.

Abhisit's government has accused Thaksin of inciting unrest in the capital from overseas.


First Published: Friday, May 14, 2010, 22:26

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