News / Asia

Thai PM Proposes Reform Council to Solve Deadlock

Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra speaks at a news conference after a cabinet meeting at an Air Force base in Bangkok, Thailand, Dec. 25, 2013.
Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra speaks at a news conference after a cabinet meeting at an Air Force base in Bangkok, Thailand, Dec. 25, 2013.
VOA News
Thailand's embattled prime minister has proposed the creation of a national reform council in an attempt to resolve the country's ongoing political crisis.

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra has already dismissed parliament and called for early elections, but this has failed to satisfy opposition demands she resign.

Yingluck on Wednesday said the proposed reform council would work alongside the new government, which is to be elected February 2.

She also said, however, that the body would not be part of the government, and that its members would be chosen by an independent commission.

Its tasks would include studying constitutional amendments, changes to the economy, ways to address corruption, and electoral reform.

There has been no response from protest leader Suthep Thaugsuban, who has said there should be reforms before the election is held.

Suthep has vowed to disrupt the vote. Anti-government protesters have tried to block sites where candidates are trying to register.

The ex-deputy prime minister has led weeks of protests, many of which have occupied government buildings in the capital.

Protests in Bangkok

  • Anti-government protesters chant slogans during a rally in an attempt to disrupt the election registration at a sports gymnasium in Bangkok, Dec. 25, 2013.
  • Anti-government protesters storm a sports gymnasium in an attempt to disrupt the election registration in Bangkok, Dec. 25, 2013.
  • Anti-government protesters battle with riot police at the gate of the gymnasium where candidates register for elections in Bangkok, Dec. 25, 2013.
  • An anti-government protester waves a Thai national flag at the gymnasium where candidates register for  upcoming elections in Bangkok, Dec. 25, 2013.
  • Anti-government protest leader Suthep Thaugsuban and supporters make their way to the Democracy Monument after dispersing from blocking a sport stadium in Bangkok, Dec. 24, 2013.

Protesters say the prime minister's removal is necessary to purge the country of corruption and money politics. They view Yingluck as a puppet of her brother, former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra.

Thaksin, a billionaire businessman, was ousted in a 2006 military coup. He is living in self-imposed exile overseas after being convicted of corruption.

Yingluck and her brother have the support of Thailand's rural poor, largely because of Thaksin's policies to bring virtually free health care, cheap loans and other benefits to the long-neglected countryside. However, they are strongly disliked by the urban middle class and more educated elite.

The main opposition Democrat Party said Saturday it will boycott the vote, which Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra's ruling party would likely win.

You May Like

Westgate Mall Attack Survivors Confront Painful Memories

On anniversary of terror attack, survivors discuss how they have coped with trauma they experienced that day More

Iraqi Kurd President Urges World Community to Protect Syrian City

Islamic State fighters are besieging Kobani, also known as Ayn al-Arab, after seizing at least 21 surrounding villages in a major assault against city on Syria's northern border with Turkey More

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

Conservationists hail ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015 More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctionsi
X
September 18, 2014 2:28 AM
A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctions

A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Belgian Researchers Discover Way to Block Cancer Metastasis

Cancer remains one of the deadliest diseases, despite many new methods to combat it. Modern medicine has treatments to prevent the growth of primary tumor cells. But most cancer deaths are caused by metastasis, the stage when primary tumor cells change and move to other parts of the body. A team of Belgian scientists says it has found a way to prevent that process. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Mogadishu's Flood of Foreign Workers Leaves Somalis Out of Work

Unemployment and conflict has forced many young Somalians out of the country in search of a better life. But a newfound stability in the once-lawless nation has created hope — and jobs — which, some say, are too often being filled by foreigners. Abdulaziz Billow reports from Mogadishu.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.
Video

Video NASA Picks Boeing, SpaceX to Carry Astronauts Into Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, has chosen Boeing and SpaceX companies to build the next generation of spacecraft that will carry U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station by the year 2017. The deal with private industry enables NASA to end its dependence on Russia to send space crews into low Earth orbit and back. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Future of Ukrainian Former President's Estate Uncertain

More than six months after Ukraine's former President Viktor Yanukovych fled revolution to Russia, authorities have yet to gain control of his palatial estate. Protesters occupy the grounds and opened it to tourists but they are also refusing to turn it over to the state. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Mezhigirya, just north of Kyiv.
Video

Video China Muslims Work to Change Perceptions After Knife Attacks

China says its has sentenced three men to death and one woman to life in prison for a deadly knife attack in March that left more than 30 dead and 140 injured. Beijing says Muslim militants from China's restive western region of Xinjiang carried out the attacks. Now, more than six months after the incident, residents in the city are still coping with the aftermath. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Kunming.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid