PM is confident of peaceful New Year holiday

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BANGKOK, Dec 18 —  Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha is confident of peace and order in Thailand during the New Year celebrations.

He vowed to take tough action against anyone planning to cause disturbances or violence.

After chairing a meeting of the National Security Council, Gen Prayut said he ordered the authorities and the armed forces to prevent violence and incidents of unrest and said he is confident that this New Year’s period would be free of such violence as happened in 2007.

He said that the National Council for Peace and Order, the Royal Thai Police Office, the Ministry of Interior and the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration stepped up security measures and had surveillance cameras installed to cover all areas.

Anyone who planned to create any violent incident could not escape, he said.

“We attach importance to all parties and all matters, be they politically motivated incidents or those resulting from boldness. I am not uttering a threat but I will take decisive actions against those who will trouble the public because they are not considered as patriots,” the prime minister said.

He ruled out the possibility of any terror attack, saying Thailand was not a target and intelligence reports did not show the possibility.

The prime minister denied any knowledge about the report that US authorities tortured their detained suspects in Thailand. He said that Thailand only handed over suspects as the US requested and had no idea what it did with the people afterward.

“The Thai government is not responsible for the matter. Please do not exaggerate on it. Otherwise, Thailand will have more enemies,” the prime minister said.