UDD Conditions for Peace, Arrest Suthep

The Thai deputy PM, Suthep Thaugsuban, left, with the prime minister, Abhisit Vejjajiva. Photograph: Narong Sangnak/EPA

The Red Shirts ( UDD ) were falling over themselves just last week saying that they welcomed negotiations with the government to bring the protests to an end. The key element of those negotiations is the dissolution of Parliament and new elections being held in November. Of course,  in true Red Shirt fashion,  it’s not enough that they agree to the governments 5 point plan they need to have their own plan which includes Deputy Prime Minister, Suthep Thaungsuban,  surrendering to police.  The UDD feel that he alone is responsible for the death and injury toll that happened on April 10th when government troops clashed with protestors.

Suthep was in charge of security operations on April 10 when more than 20 people were killed in a failed attempt to disperse protesters. His role was subsequently given to army chief Gen Anupong Paojinda. Suthep is expected to meet with Justice Ministry officials from the Department of Special Investigation today to answer questions about the event. Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva, also agreed to meet DSI officials once he is cleared to do so by Parliament. Government spokesman Panitan Wattanayagorn  made this statement yesterday:

The prime minister and the deputy prime minister made the decision to go and listen to the complaint at the DSI tomorrow especially for the case of Khun Suthep Thaugsuban. This is in line with the prime minister’s position to defend his decision in a court of law when the emergency decree was declared

Lets forget for a moment that this would have never happened if the Red Shirts weren’t protesting, while we are at it lets also forget the fact that protesters were also armed and just for shits and giggles lets ignore the fact that UDD leaders put not only their people but private citizens lives in jeopardy on more than one occasion. The UDD leaders want the Deputy Prime Minister to be charged and stand trial for the April 10th clashes although they want their own leaders absolved from all prosecution.

Should their be an inquiry into the April 10th action against the protesters? Absolutely. Should Deputy Prime Minister Suthep step down and face possible action from the Ministry of Justice? Yes. Should this be a sticking point to the peace process? Absolutely not.

Although the UDD leaders have endorsed the governments schedule for new elections they are standing firm on this one point and have stated that the protests will continue until the Deputy Prime Minister is taken into custody. This doesn’t sound as if they are welcoming negotiations or accepting the Prime Ministers 5 point plan.This sounds like the usual nonsense from the UDD leaders who are still in contact and under the control of ex-Prime Minister Thaksin.

If the UDD leaders are serious about having Suthep turn himself into the police then they should offer up their own leaders who have arrest warrants out for them as well to show that they are willing to do what is best for the country. I doubt any UDD leader will be turning themselves in any time soon though. This seems as if it is yet another ploy by the UDD to derail the possibility of peace unless it is on their terms.

With the announcement last week of the governments 5 point plan and the possible acceptance of that plan by the UDD  fresh violence broke out in Bangkok with the killing of two police officers and the injury of many innocent citizens. It is still not known who was responsible for the latest attack but there are many on all sides of this story that would like nothing better than to see the peace process derailed.

The Prime Ministers 5 point plan to bring peace back to Bangkok and Thailand also includes constitutional and electoral reforms and economic development as well as the dissolution of Parliament and new elections..


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3 Responses to UDD Conditions for Peace, Arrest Suthep
  1. Ben Shingleton
    May 12, 2010 | 7:03 pm

    ….reminds me of Thai relations when business goes bad… There always seems to be a sticking point, where one side will HAVE to get one over on the other… think it may stem from the Thai’s values when it comes to status…. It just carries on and on, and I feel the red shirts just want to keep pushing the boundaries a little further at each agreement – gives the impression they don’t want it to end, and doesn’t give me any faith in their abilities should they reach government.
    .-= Ben Shingleton´s last blog ..Muay Thai Youngsters =-.

  2. Catherine
    May 12, 2010 | 7:44 pm

    I want Thailand to sort this out for themselves, but I sorely wish that they’d blinking just get on with it already.

    When I heard about their counter deal, I flipped. Enough already.

    Abhisit must have the patience of a saint, or not… dunno. There is too much in Thai politics that I don’t know about.
    .-= Catherine´s last blog ..Overview: Learn Thai Podcast =-.

  3. Mike
    May 13, 2010 | 1:27 pm

    Talen, I don’t know about you, but to me the whole sordid mess is getting a tad boring. Whether the dispute ends or not I really don’t see things progressing unless someone seeks a true compromise and implements a radical overhaul of the political system.

    As an aside I note with interest Thailand has just been rejected for membership of the World Human Rights Commission. I wonder why?
    .-= Mike´s last blog ..Amphawa Floating Market-Feeling the Heat Photo /Image =-.