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Backers mark Thaksin's birthday

A celebration for ex-PM Thaksin Shinawatra's 65th birthday by avid supporters and red shirts at the Imperial Department Store in Lat Phrao was cut short yesterday on the order of military officials.

Singthong Buachum, a legal adviser to Pheu Thai Party, said that Thaksin's admirers and red shirts who work at the department store held a merit-making ceremony and put up a big picture of Thaksin and former prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra to celebrate Thaksin's birthday yesterday.

But at 1.30pm, he said military men ordered them to remove the picture and stopped the celebration.

The Love Chiang Mai 51 group also held a celebration for Thaksin and religious rites at Wat Sri Bunruang in Chiang Mai. They sang the Happy Birthday song, blew out candles and chanted "We love Thaksin".

Phrakru Suthepsithikun, the temple's abbot, said the merit-making rite was held to ward off bad luck for Thaksin, his family and Thailand.

Pinthongta Shinawatra, Thaksin's daughter, posted pictures and messages on her personal Instagram, saying she did not have the chance to spend time with her father on his birthday yesterday and had not met him for many months. She wished him a strong body and strong mind forever and for people who love and wait for him, including his family. She said she loved him and was proud every minute after being born his child. "Happy Birthday to our most terrific daddy."

Meanwhile, National Council for Peace and Order chief General Prayuth Chan-ocha yesterday assigned Army secretary Lt-General Sirot Thasanont to present a vase of flowers to wish Democrat Party chief adviser Chuan Leekpai on the occasion of his 76th birthday on Monday.


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