- Posted December 8, 2013 by
Thai PM bows to protesters
hailand’s prime minister has announced that early elections demanded by the opposition will be held if a majority of people vote for them in a national referendum. Opposition MPs claim they’re ready to resign en masse immediately.
PM Yingluck Shinawatra appeared on national TV with a proposal to dismiss the House of Representatives and call early elections within 60 days as required by the constitution – if the people vote for elections first.
“I would like to confirm once again that I am not clinging to my position. I am willing to dissolve the House or resign if I am convinced that it would really be a way out to solve the problems and enable the country to go forward. That is to say, the decision must be truly made by the majority of the people,” said Shinawatra, who became prime minister in 2011.
Her address aired on Thai television after Shinawatra, 46, held consultations with members of the government.
She warned that in case the opposition does not like the proposal, or would not agree with the results of the democratic elections, the crisis would only be prolong as it was in 2006, when political chaos in the country ended up with a military coup.
Shinawatra said the opposition’s demands for her ouster were unprecedented and possibly illegal.
“To have a government without an election is a big issue which can affect the image and confidence of the country. If this proposal is to be put into practice, the people should be asked whether it is acceptable to them. Therefore, a public referendum is required and this method is allowed by the constitution,” the PM announced, stressing that the government would consider protesters’ proposals on Monday December 9, to find a way out of the political deadlock.
“I’m willing to listen to proposals from the protesters. I’m not addicted to this title,” Shinawatra said. "I'm ready to resign and dissolve parliament if that is what majority of the Thai people want.”
“Today, nobody is a loser. All of us, including the nation, are winners," she said.
In the meantime, anti-government protests in the Thai capital continue.