National reconciliation expected in maximum four years

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BANGKOK, Jan 8 — Key figures in the National Reform Council (NRC) expect to complete national reconciliation and national reform in no more than four years.

NRC Chairman Thienchay Kiranandana, Constitution Drafting Committee Chairman Borwornsak Uwanno and Political Reform Committee Chairman Sombat Thamrongthanyawong held a press conference on the formation of a 20-member reconciliation-planning committee.

The panel comprises representatives of the NRC, conflict resolution experts and people affected by political conflicts. Anek Laothamatas heads the new committee.

The panel will promote national reconciliation and national reform.

It will campaign for public understanding on the causes and impacts of conflicts, create atmosphere and participation that will facilitate reconciliation, prevent the repetition of conflicts and reduce prejudices among groups of people.

Mr Thienchay said that the affected people would have opportunities to tell their stories and that lessons would be drawn from past incidents. He asked the mass media to help gather public opinion on the methods of reconciliation and said he expected reconciliation to be achieved in the near future.

Dr Borwornsak said reconciliation, reform to reduce inequality and solutions to political problems were the three main objectives of the new constitution and that society should be able to achieve reconciliation in four years.

“The process must be short and fast but it must not be immediate amnesty. There will be a process to create reconciliation that will include the acceptance of wrongdoing, rehabilitation for victims and promises to prevent the recurrence of past incidents,” Dr Borwornsak said.