Govt 'Not Responsible' For US Blacklist Rumour

(25 December) A top official has denied the allegation that the Thai government has been behind the rumour about a US blacklist on anti-government protest leaders.


In the reports circulated by a number of media and social network sites in the past week it was claimed that the US Embassy in Bangkok has blacklisted prominent protest leaders such as Mr. Suthep Thaugsuban from entering the United States due to their protest in front of the Embassy earlier this week.
The rumour was ultimately denied by US Ambassador to Thailand, Ms. Kristy Kenny, while an official at the US Embassy told Khaosod the embassy does not make public its blacklist procedures.
However, Democrat Party spokesperson Chawanon Intarakomalyasut accused the government of publicising the rumour to confuse the public and taint the reputation of Mr. Suthep and his fellow leaders in the People′s Committee for Absolute Democracy With the King As Head of State (PCAD).
But Ms.Sunisa Lertphakawat, the Deputy Spokesperson of the Prime Minister′s Office, said in a press conference yesterday that the government did not spread the false rumour as alleged by Mr. Chawanond.
“Visa Process is an internal issue of each sovereign state, and Thailand could not intervene with any country’s decision” said Mr. Sunisa.
Noting that Mr. Chawanond has acted in defence of the PCAD leaders, Ms. Sunisa asked further whether Mr. Chawanond′s action is a proof that the opposition party and the anti-government protest leadership are of one body, contrary to the repeated claims made by Democrat leaders that the PCAD is not related to the opposition party.
If that is the case, she went on, she would like to ask for any responsibility from Democrat Party leader, Mr. Abhisit Vejjajiva.
“The protesters had occupied many government buildings in Bangkok, obstructed the Election Registration procedures, and threatened the freedom of the press” said Ms. Sunisa, “That is barbaric and against the law.”
On 23 December, a group of PCAD protesters blocked the Thai-Japan stadium and prevented candidates from many parties to apply for next term’s General Election, which is expected to be held on 2 February. They had also cut off water and power supplies to some government buildings to pressure the officials.
“Mr. Abhisit should make sure that the protests of PCAD are under the law and against any use of violence”, Ms. Sunisa demanded, adding that one Pheu Thai Party official was prevented from leaving one of the besieged building and was unable to take his regular medication.
“What if something happened to him, would the Democrat Party be ready to account for that?” Ms. Sunisa asked.
She also warned that the leaders of Democrat Party should stop lying that they are not against the upcoming election, because "the eyes of the Thai and global citizens" have seen otherwise.
"They are ruining the proud history of the Democrat Party, whose name refers directly to a democratic system of governance. Sadly, they?d rather act in a contradictory way with their party name," Ms. Sunisa alleged.

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