US envoy unworried by anti-American protest in Thailand


CHIANG MAI, Sept 19 – US ambassador to Thailand Kristie Kenney said she believes the anti-US protests in Muslim world will not deteriorate and that the situation in Thailand is different from other countries where violent protests were triggered and claimed lives of American diplomats.

The American envoy commented as she attended a seminar on the “US Presidential Election and Impact on Thailand” at Chiang Mai University on the same day that dozens of Muslims in this northern city protested in front of the US Consulate against a film considered offensive to Islam which sparked violent anti-US protests in more than 20 countries.

The US ambassador said she is unworried by the situation in Thailand as the movement here is different from other countries and that both countries have long-established relations.

Ms Kristie said there is no need to issue a warning on safety concern for Americans living in the kingdom as Thailand is a peaceful country and that she is confident with the security provided by Thai authorities.

The US envoy added the United States respects the freedom of expression of all parties and reaffirmed that it has not supported any act which is deemed insulting other religions or nationalities, or any violence.

She said she believes the situation will not deteriorate or trigger more conflicts between the Americans and Muslims and that the situation will at last improve.

The protest outside the US Consulate in Chiang Mai this morning was peaceful after the protesters handed in their statement to the US ambassador via the consulate official, denouncing those who took part in the production of the film, “Innocence of Muslims,” and demanding that the United States punish the film producer and those involved.

On Tuesday, hundreds of Muslims also protested peacefully outside the US Embassy in Bangkok amid tight security by 400 police officers who were deployed there to maintain law and order.