US concerned at ongoing political conflicts

national February 04, 2014 00:00

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The United States does not wish to see a military coup d'etat end the political crisis in Thailand but remains concerned that political tensions are posing challenges to the democratic institutions and processes in the kingdom, US State Department spokesp

Well, we certainly do not want to see a coup or violence,” Psaki said, responding to a question from a journalist during a daily briefing.

Washington was speaking directly to elements of Thai society to make clear the importance of using democratic and constitutional means to resolve political difference, she said, adding “that’s where our focus remains”.

Psaki said the US did not take sides but “we continue to urge all sides to commit to sincere dialogue to resolve political differences peacefully and democratically.

“We support a democratic solution to the ongoing tensions in Thailand. So we’re engaged very closely in that on the ground, and we, of course, believe there are more steps that need to be taken in that process,” she said.

She noted that although the February 2 election was peaceful and orderly in most areas of Thailand, there were also “disturbing incidents of violence” on the eve of the elections, attempts to block voters and election workers from reaching some voting sites, and disruptions to the delivery of some election materials.

“We do regret, of course, that many voters were prevented from exercising their right to vote, and we reiterate our call for all sides to refrain from violence and exercise restraint to avoid further injuries, loss of life, and destruction of property.

“There were some concerns about how it was undertaken, especially the fact that some were unable to vote, and there are new – additional processes that need to take place moving forward.”