Protest leader Suthep rejects negotiations with govt


BANGKOK, Feb 25 – Protest leader Suthep Thaugsuban today flatly ruled out dialogue with the government to end Thailand’s political conflicts.

He said it was unnecessary to find a mediator for negotiations since “a country is not for trading and the People’s Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) has organised rallies, aiming at changes and appointment of a good person to run the country.”

Mr Suthep, PDRC secretary general, said the government has been trying to discredit the movement’s leaders and supporters as well as spread rumours in order to weaken their strength.

He called on PDRC supporters to strictly follow the non-violent principles which could be a constitutional protection for them.

People from all walks of life to dress in black for three days, starting tomorrow, he said, to mourn the deaths of three children from bombings at the PDRC rally venues at Ratchprasong on Sunday and in Trat province on Friday night.

He himself wore a black shirt today.

Caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra today expressed condolences to the families of those killed in the demonstrations and ordered security reinforcement at rally sites.

She had been told that overall 21 persons were killed and 738 others injured at political rallies and said protesters should not take their children to rally sites.

Caretaker Deputy Prime Minister/Foreign Minister Surapong Tovichakchaikul informed the Cabinet that Indian businessman Satish Sehgal would be deported from Thailand for his involvement in the PDRC rallies. Mr Satish has lived in Thailand for five decades.

Ms Yingluck is scheduled to visit the northern provinces of Chiang Rai and Chiang Mai tomorrow. She has been on the move since Government House and her temporary office at the headquarters of Permanent Secretary for Defence were sealed off by protesters.