"You want the Army to come out and act, right?" OK, if we do, we will not return [to the barracks] : Army chief
The Election Commission (EC) said yesterday military and security chiefs have accepted an invitation to attend a meeting on Tuesday to discuss the political climate ahead of planning for a new election - provided they do not have a conflicting engagement.
At the meeting, the EC will brief the military and security chiefs on what happened during the January 26 and February 2 elections that led to a ruling by the Constitutional Court recently to nullify the February 2 poll.
“In order to host the next election, the EC wishes to ask the military and security authorities to evaluate the situation and set guidelines, particularly on security affairs for the election,” EC secretary-general Puchong Nutrawong said.
Pheu Thai Party spokesman Prompong Nopparit called on the EC to allow representatives of 53 political parties to join the meeting.
Prompong said the EC so far had not agreed to allow party representatives to attend.
“Why won’t the EC listen to political parties as well. The EC chose to consult only the military commanders and security agencies,” he said.
Meanwhile, Army chief General Prayuth Chan-ocha has responded to widespread calls for the Army to act against the Yingluck Shinawatra government and the so-called Thaksin regime by possibly staging a coup.
“You want the Army to come out and act, right?” he said.
“OK, if we do, we will not return [to the barracks], I can ensure you of that.”
He also commented on an earlier statement he made in response to calls for the Army to stage a coup against the Yingluck government.
“How can employees of a company oust the company’s executives?” he had said.
His statement went viral on the Internet, with many people criticising him for his perceived support of the Yingluck government and not the country.
The Army chief claimed the statement was misinterpreted as he had meant it to be taken in more general terms.