Briefing on political situation for foreign journalists


BANGKOK, May 29 — Thailand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the army informed foreign correspondents about the Thai political landscape and briefed them regarding the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) takeover of the country’s administration to restore national peace before paving the way for the next general election to return democracy.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs department of information director-general and spokesman Sek Wannamethee and Lt-Gen Chatchalerm Chalermsuk, deputy chief-of-staff of the Army, briefed the media. The briefing was the first one for foreign correspondents after the May 22 coup.

The spokesman elaborated on the reasons for the coup and some limitation to the liberty and freedom of civilians and the mass media which it represented.

They mentioned the necessity to ensure order in the country and the creation of an atmosphere of reconciliation that will lead to national reform and the next general election.

He denied the government planned to block Facebook or the Line chat applications.

Foreign correspondents expressed their concerns about their news coverage in Thailand. The spokesman gave assurances that their news coverage could continue as usual. He also urged them to do it accurately and in a straightforward manner.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman said that it was unlikely for the United States to become involved in the present political situations in Thailand in its Trafficking in Persons report next month.

He does not think that present political situation will influence Thailand’s position regarding the United States’ human trafficking watch list either because, he said, the list was based on information collected last year.