PM Yingluck: ‘People’s Council’ as demanded by protesters unlawful

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BANGKOK, Dec 2 – Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra said today she did not see a constitutional leeway to return the administrative power to Thai people as demanded by anti-government protesters.

She was responding to a demand by Suthep Thaugsuban, protest leader and secretary general of the People’s Democratic Reform Committee, on Sunday that the prime minister return power to the Thai people themselves as owners of the country and its sovereignty.

In a brief interview with the media at the National Police Bureau this afternoon, Ms Yingluck said the government is willing to unconditionally allow legal experts, all quarters and Thai people to find resolutions and peace for the country.

“However, I don’t see any laws or stipulations in the Constitution which allow such a move. The country’s happiness is tantamount to the majority of the people which the government is ready to follow,” she said.

The premier said the government is not stubborn and is willing to resign or dissolve the House but it has to perform under the Constitution.

There is no law that allows the formation of a people’s council as proposed by Mr Suthep, she said, insisting that the government is open to negotiations if protesters agree to disperse for the country’s peace.

It was Ms Yingluck’s first media interview after her talk with Mr Suthep in the presence of the leaders of the three armed forces last night.

Mr Suthep spelled out details of the dialogue after meeting with the prime minister. However, Ms Yingluck  remained silent until this afternoon.

The People’s Democractic Reform Committee leader said last night’s talk with the prime minister would be the “one and only” and he would not enter any dialogue with Ms Yingluck in the future.