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Sun, March 19, 2006 : Last updated 19:56 pm (Thai local time)



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Home > National > Replace PM, professionals urge Palace





PREMIERSHIP
Replace PM, professionals urge Palace

Lawyers, journalists mount bid to unseat Thaksin

Lawyers and media professionals yesterday issued a statement urging the public to support a move to petition for royal intervention to appoint a

prime minister to replace Thaksin Shinawatra.

The statement, endorsed by the Law Society of Thailand and the Press Council of Thailand, said Thaksin should resign immediately in order to pave way for the royal intervention as set out in Article 7 of the Constitution.

"Thaksin should quit so that Article 7 can be invoked to restore peace in society," said Banyat Thasaneeyavet, chairwoman of the press council.

Law Society of Thailand chairman Det-udom Krairit said Thaksin's leadership was flawed and his decision to dissolve the House of Representative had driven a wedge into society on an unprecedented scale.

"Article 7 is expected to seal cracks in society and pave the way for the checks on Thaksin's alleged misrule," Det-udom said.

If the political turmoil persists, violence might break out with tragic consequences, he said.

Warring parties appeared reluctant to compromise even though Privy Council president General Prem Tinsulanonda had urged them to do so, he added.

The possibility of bloodshed is worrisome, and it is necessary that the Privy Council should petition for royal intervention to pre-empt a tragedy, he said.

"The Black May incident in 1992 set a precedent for royal intervention to rectify political maladies, but this time relevant parties should not wait till blood is spilt," he said, referring to the royal directive in 1992 to warring sides to map out a solution rather than confront each other.

Press Council adviser Pongsak Payakavichien said Thaksin was trying to cling to power as shield for his wrongdoings, including the Shin Corp sell-off, which was seen as selling national assets, in the form of concessions, to foreigners.

Pongsak called on the civil service to detach itself from the government and

join the people in seeking royal intervention.

He said the people should rally behind the proposal for royal intervention. A neutral prime minister appointed by His Majesty the King could be expected to untangle the problems, and Thaksin would have a chance to clear his name, he added.

Media scholar Ubonrat Siriyuwasak

said the Press Council was right to speak out.

"All professions have the right to say where they stand. The Press Council statement will not prejudice news coverage," said Ubonrat, who has campaigned for media ethics.

However, Ubonrat said the situation was not critical enough to warrant implementing Article 7.








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