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Thai protesters want ex-PM's passport revoked

Thai protesters want ex-PM's passport revoked

About 2,000 protesters rallied outside Thailand's Ministry of Foreign Affairs Thursday, demanding that it revoke the diplomatic passport of ousted Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra and work to extradite him from Britain.
The demonstration was led by the People's Alliance for Democracy which organized a bigger protest Tuesday at the British Embassy, calling for the London government to return Thaksin to Thailand where he faces corruption charges.
Thailand has not requested Thaksin's extradition and he still carries a Thai diplomatic passport.
Bangkok newspapers reported Thursday that Thaksin and his wife Pojaman were applying for political asylum in Britain, where the multimillionaire owns several properties and the Manchester City football club.
But one of Thaksin's lawyers in Bangkok, Vichit Plangsriskul, said another lawyer of the ex-prime minister quoted by the press was just explaining that Thaksin had the right to seek asylum.
"Thaksin is a criminal who ran away from the justice system. He does not deserve to carry a Thai diplomatic passport," a key alliance leader, Sondhi Limthongkul, told the demonstrators.
The People's Alliance for Democracy was at the forefront of mass street protests that led to Thaksin's ouster in 2006 through a bloodless military coup while the prime minister was abroad.
Thaksin returned to Thailand in February to face a slew of court cases involving alleged corruption and abuse of power.
But Thaksin and his wife failed to show up Aug. 11 to face charges against them before the Supreme Court, which has issued warrants for their arrest. In a letter from London, Thaksin explained his decision to flee, saying he could not expect a fair trial in Thailand.


Updated : 2021-05-07 01:23 GMT+08:00