Pheu Thai agrees to poll talks

The Pheu Thai Party insisted it will join a meeting held next week by the Election Commission (EC) to discuss plans for a fresh general election.

Pheu Thai spokesman Prompong Nopparit said Wednesday the party's executives would meet today to work out a proposal on a fresh election before proposing it to the EC. During the meeting, party representatives would be picked to join the EC's meeting, scheduled for next Tuesday.

He stressed any representatives sent by the party to attend the meeting with the EC could make decisions on behalf of the party.

Earlier, Democrat Party leader Abhisit Vejjajiva had demanded to know whether Pheu Thai would send representatives with decision-making powers to the EC meeting.

Mr Prompong lashed out at Mr Abhisit's demand, saying the Democrat leader tried to make himself look better than others.

He backed EC member Somchai Srisuttiyakorn's bid to hold talks on new polls with the caretaker government today. But he did not want the EC to set a condition that it would not hold a new election if no resolution was reached at today's meeting.

During next Tuesday's meeting, Pheu Thai would push a resolution made by 53 registered political parties that a fresh poll must be held within 60 days as earlier proposed to the EC, he said. Holding one within 90 days would be too long, he added.

He blamed anti-government People's Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) secretary-general Suthep Thaugsuban for obstructing elections.

If the EC was sincere in organising elections, it should hold talks with the PDRC leader and ask him to stop obstructing the polls, Mr Prompong said.

He blasted Democrat Party deputy leader Jurin Laksanawisit for his remark posted on his Facebook page that the government was buying time to stay in power, saying Mr Jurin tried to distort facts to discredit the government.

He challenged Mr Jurin and the Democrats to announce during next week's meeting that the party would join the election.

Former government chief whip Ammuay Klangpa yesterday warned of chaos if the Constitutional Court rules against caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra.

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