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12 June, 2019 00:00 00 AM
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Thai junta chief made PM in royal decree

AFP, Bangkok
Thai junta chief  made PM in royal decree

Junta chief Prayut Chan-O-Cha formally became Thailand’s 29th prime minister Tuesday after a royal endorsement, completing a long transformation from soldier to civilian leader and vowing “love, unity and compassion”.

But critics may doubt the divisive leader’s pledge after his previous stint in power which was marked by a ban on political gatherings, a clamp down on the media and the muzzling of dissent.

The 65-year-old ex-army chief led the 2014 coup, the last of at least a dozen since 1932 by a military woven deeply into the country’s turbulent politics.

Thailand’s first parliament since the coup was stacked with 250 hand-picked senators who helped vote Prayut in as prime minister over the charismatic and embattled leader of the Future Forward party.

But he holds a razor-thin majority in the lower house in a country frustrated by the military’s influence on politics, with the hashtag #RIPThailand trending on Twitter after the vote.

“I will promote a peaceful environment for a unified society based on love, unity and compassion,” Prayut said after the royal decree was read out at Government House.

He also promised to “listen to the voices of the people” and protect the monarchy.

Moments before his remarks he knelt before a portrait of King Maha Vajiralongkorn, clasping his hands together in a wai and bowing several times.

Prayut faces a rocky transition trailed by questions of legitimacy.

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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