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'Rambo Isaan' vows to get out of politics

Suporn Atthawong or

Suporn Atthawong or

Suporn "Rambo Isaan" Atthawong, a former core leader of the red-shirt United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD), has called for the nation to find peace, after being detained by the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) for a week.

Upon his release on Thursday, his family members were reportedly seen waiting for him at his hometown in Khon Buri in Nakhon Ratchasima. When he arrived, the first thing he did was lay prostrate at his mother's feet with tears in his eyes.

He said he wanted to retire from politics, and reportedly sent a message to Democracy Protection Volunteers (DPV), which he founded, saying he wanted to dissolve the group to bring peace to the country so that people can have an election soon.

He asked people to stop using the name "Rambo Isaan" (Rambo of the Northeast) and called on his group to stop any violence.

"From my 30 years experience as a politician, people who create violence and conflict should not be in politics," he said.

He said that ever since he became a Member of Parliament he was too busy to take care of his family. From now on he wanted to take care of his mother, Suun, 82, and his family, peacefully.

He reportedly wants to hand back his membership of Pheu Thai Party.

Meanwhile, former UDD chairman Veerakarn Musigapong urged red shirts to calm down following the coup.

"I would like to tell UDD members and people who are still staging political campaigns to calm down and be reasonable with their fight," Veerakarn said.

"They should not be emotional and should not use violence but should adhere to reason. After the power seizure, they should extend moral support to the NCPO because we must believe that it has good intentions to return peace to the nation."

Veerakarn yesterday also led a group of red-shirt leaders to visit former education minister Chaturon Chaisang and former Pheu Thai MP Prasit Chaisisa at Bangkok Remand Prison.

Chaturon is being detained pending his arraignment for violating a summons of the NCPO. Prasit has been detained pending his arraignment on lese majeste charges.

Veerakarn spoke to Chaturon over the phone in a visitor's room for about 15 minutes. He said Chaturon, who was clad in a white T-shirt and shorts, was smiling. He then spoke to Chaisit in another room.

Chaturon's wife, Jiraporn, did not visit him as planned. It was understood that she had moved her visit from Thursday to yesterday but was not seen at the prison.

Veerakarn told reporters that Chaturon was in good health physically and mentally and that he appeared cheerful.






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