DUBAI – Former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra said the revoking of his Thai passports by Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha and the Foreign Ministry was not a big issue and he didn’t want the issue to be blown out of proportion.
In his message posted in the Instagram, Thaksin said after having seen his grandchildren in Singapore, he flew back to Dubai and spent his time meditating whenever there is free time.
However this time he said he would like to offer his compassion to the powers-that-be in Thailand so that they would be freed from greed, anger and use their wisdom in resolving problems and restoring reconciliation.
Nonetheless, he noted that the powers-that-be chose to cause disunity.
Thaksin said that he had faith in the Lord Buddha’s teaching which says as follows “nothing in his world is permanent, everything is impermanent.”
It was understood that Thaksin’s latest criticism of the powers-that-be or Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha’s junta was in response to a recommendation by a police panel that he be stripped of his police ranking because of his criticism of the Monarchy in his interview with a Korean newspaper in Seoul last week.
Meanwhile, a reform councillor has floated the idea that Thaksin Shinawatra should be deprived of the royal decorations he received throughout his career as a policeman, minister and prime minister following a move by police to strip him of his rank.
Prasarn Marukpitak, a member of the National Reform Council, told Thai media on Saturday that it was payback time for Thaksin.
“The government did the right thing when it proceeded to strip him of his rank,” said Mr Prasarn. “I think it’s only right if the cabinet should at the same occasion take back all his royal decorations.
“After all, stripping someone of a rank and royal decorations requires seeking royal permission.
“For someone who has bordered on violating Section 112 on numerous occasions, he doesn’t deserve them.”
Section 112 of the Criminal Code is the lese majeste law, which makes it a crime to insult the royal institution.
Army chief Udomdej Sitabutr said on Saturday that the army had to sue Thaksin to show that what he said was not true.
“If we let it go and fail to protect the honour of the armed forces, it means we’re cowed,” Gen Udomdej said.
The army accused Thaksin of breaking defamation laws on May 26 following the brief interview in South Korea in which he implied that the armed forces were acting at the behest of privy councillors.
“I considered it and I found it caused damage to the army so I took action,” he said.
The army, however, stopped short of directly filing a lese majeste charge against Thaksin. It simply filed a complaint so that police can take further action.
Commenting on Thaksin’s Instagram post criticising the government’s problem-solving efforts, the general said the government and the military had been trying to create reconciliation.
“I’d like to ask the speaker whether he has done his part, especially when what he said is not true and tarnishes the image of the armed forces and soldiers,” said Gen Udomdej.