UPDATE: Top brass meeting is on, Suthep says

Anti Thaksin-regime rally leader Suthep Thaugsuban on Thursday evening said the supreme commander and leaders of the army, navy, air force and police have agreed to meet with him and other protest leaders on Saturday to hear an explanation of their "political reform" plans.

Mr Suthep, the self-appointed People's Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) secretary-general, revealed the meeting at a mass gathering of supporters at Democracy Monument on Ratchadamnoen Avenue.He said PDRC leaders had sought a meeting with the military and police leaders before 8pm Thursday night but "liaison-related problems" had made it impossible. He then assigned Sakonthee Pattiyakul, a PDRC co-leader, to meet Supreme Commander Gen Thanasak Patimaprakorn and invite him to the proposed meeting in person. “However, it turned out that Gen Thanasak had just accepted our request and suggested the meeting be held at 3pm on Saturday.“I thank the supreme commander and the armed force leaders for allowing PDRC leaders to represent the people and to directly clarify the will of the masses and to explain why they have risen up to fight for changes in the country, instead of communicating with them through the press,” Mr Suthep said. Meanwhile, Mr Suthep admitted that he thought the PDRC would have won the battle against the government on Dec 9 when masses of people held city-wide demonstrations. But he underestimated caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra’s stubbornness. He apologised to the protesters for the mistakes in his efforts to lead the anti-government movement. "Anything that has gone wrong because of my miscalculation [of Ms Yingluck] I apologise for as I know pretty well that you all have waited for victory several times," he said.

The Royal Thai Armed Forces (RTAF) has issued a statement saying the PDRC's request to explain their reform plans would lead to an exchange of opinions that will bring about a peaceful solution.

The RTAF would invite representatives from state agencies, academics and all stakeholders to attend the forum where PDRC leaders would explain its national reform process which would be followed by a Q&A session.

An RTAF source said red-shirt United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship representatives will also be invited to the talks and that Supreme Commander Gen Tanasak Patimaprakorn will act as moderator.

Share your thoughts

Discussion 1 : 13/12/2013 at 08:20 AM
i agree wholeheartedly with your comment. the army should not interfere in what is basically a civil matter. nor should the police take sides, they are there to serve and protect the people, irrespective of which political party they belong to! mr suthep is a fugitve from the law and the police should do their duty and serve the arrest warrant which was legally issued!
Discussion 2 : 13/12/2013 at 07:50 AM
Last night the PDRC showed evidence that the thaksin clicque is stealing a lot of money (by millions)from the people. No wonder why he is soooo rich. They showed 2 video clips about a dialogue with some MP where he tells not to worry about the protest of the amnisty bill : it will fade away quickly and the other where he explains how to get rid if the King so that he can become a dictator (like mugabe in Zimbabwe) or like Hun Sen. But this kind of news is not shown on TV channels 3 5 7 9 11. Spoken of censorship. By telling big lies and half truths Thaksin uses the Red Shirts with arms to intimidade the people.
Discussion 3 : 13/12/2013 at 07:21 AM
Personally I don't think the military should NOT get involved in politics.
Discussion 4 : 13/12/2013 at 07:18 AM
Suthep seems to have changed his stride. Previously he was arguing that he didn't want any compromise at all. Now he is willing to meet and consult with everyone including the UDD. I grew up in this beautiful country and was just about to fly back to buy a home here, but sadly with the current political events, I feel like Thailand has now taken a severe step backwards in its political development and I don't really want to live in a fascist or communist type system, pretending to be a democracy.
Discussion 5 : 13/12/2013 at 07:11 AM
and I guess Mr. Thaksin is just like Mandela?…. don't forget 2,500 deaths of innocent people in his "drugs crackdown"….how soon we can choose to forget.
Discussion 6 : 13/12/2013 at 07:10 AM
This was predictable, inasmuch as the military has always been in the elite camp - can anyone remember the top brass ever backing the upcountry majority? Why should they? Anyone outside of Bangkok is considered to be unsophisticated - the military and the elite would prefer a system that took the vote away from the rural proletariat - then the "right" people would be in control of the country.
Discussion 7 : 13/12/2013 at 06:59 AM
For a moment yesterday, I wondered what country I was living in. The military refusing to take sides? Thankfully, things are back to normal and Thailand is as it always was. Also, it's nice of them to invite the UDD to help determine the best way to nullify 12 million Thai votes, yet again, and to remove their representatives from the democratic process so we don't have to have any more "mistakes" in future elections.
Discussion 8 : 13/12/2013 at 06:11 AM
i cannot understand how a leader of a newly formed party, leads a protest for over a month, resulting in turmoil and six deaths and is scheduled to meet with the heads of police, armed forces and who knows who. the meeting was cancelled last i heard and now its on!!! there is somehting suthep is not telling us! i feel that someone big is behind him, backing him to the hilt. those people attending the protests, what happens to their business' and work while they are away? dont tell me they are all unemployed! sickening!
Discussion 9 : 13/12/2013 at 05:56 AM
The top brass middle man will tell Suthep whether his "people's council" is allowed.
Discussion 10 : 13/12/2013 at 05:41 AM
Mandela was figthing for "one man one vote", for equal rights of all races and groups. The world respects and loves him. Suthep is opposite of Mandela, this person as a leader of Thailand has proved last days that he will bring only chaos, violence and destruction. Don't forget, he has signed the order to use army (instead of well equipped police forces) against protestors which ended with almost 100 people dead, so nobody can expect mercy from him if he would come into absolute power, and is allowed to abolish elections, like Mussolini and Hitler have done. Hope and pray that he can be stopped before its to late.
Discussion 11 : 13/12/2013 at 05:09 AM
Mandela was fighting for "one man one vote", for equal rights of all races and origin. If somebody not likes level of education in North East or South Thailand, why not improve education for all? Suthep is opposite of Mandela, this person as a leader of Thailand will bring only chaos, violence and destruction. Don't forget, he has signed the order to use army (instead of well equipped police forces) against protestors which ended with almost 100 people dead, so nobody can expect any mercy from him if he would come in absolute power. Hope and pray that he can be stopped before its to late.
Discussion 12 : 13/12/2013 at 04:28 AM
Yes, whether we or Mr Suthep like it or not, "the will of the masses" should be determined by the ballot box on Feb 2. But I'll bet "London to a brick" that Mr Suthep doesn't want those elections.
Discussion 13 : 13/12/2013 at 04:05 AM
If the RTAF really invites to attend a forum with Q&A and every stakeholder including the UDD will attend, than the nation will be a step further to peace. The RTAF is still very powerful and influential in this country, like it or not, and everybody should follow this invitation. It is a chance for all stakeholders to explain, answer questions, and ask questions and to challenge Suthep’s ideas. It would be very positive and it does not mean, the RTAF gets involved, interferes or is going to side anyone.
Discussion 14 : 13/12/2013 at 01:32 AM
Because of Yingluck Sinawatra stubbornness ? I think you are much much more stubborn !! Just admit that you Lost the battle !!
Discussion 15 : 13/12/2013 at 12:55 AM
PT has lots of the police, but the police in Thailand still fear the power of the military.
Discussion 16 : 12/12/2013 at 11:32 PM
"Anything that has gone wrong because of my miscalculation [of Ms Yingluck] I apologise for as I know pretty well that you all have waited for victory several times," he said. Suthep's biggest miscalculation is his thought that he represents the "masses" commonly defined as, "the great body of people other than the elite". Or maybe he does know he represents only a minority and thus opposes elections by the "masses" and prefers appointments by the elite.
Discussion 17 : 12/12/2013 at 11:31 PM
Why Suthep want to meet top brass? If he think his approach is the best way go ahead.
Discussion 18 : 12/12/2013 at 10:26 PM
Is it asking too much to get confirmation from Gen Thanasak on whether there really is a meeting scheduled between him and Suthep? At least make an effort.
Discussion 19 : 12/12/2013 at 10:18 PM
Unbelievable! Who's the real master behind Suthep that can scare the whole country? There must be a magic word abracadabra... from iPhone application.
Discussion 20 : 12/12/2013 at 10:15 PM
Unbelievable...who's the real master behind Suthep that scare the whole country?? from iPhone application.

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