Home > World News > Thai PM: Leaders must exercise restraint against protesters [Video]

Thai PM: Leaders must exercise restraint against protesters [Video]

http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/.element/apps/cvp/3.0/swf/cnn_416x234_embed.swf?context=embed_edition&videoId=business/2011/01/28/qmb.davos.thai.pm.riots.abhisit.cnn

(CNN) — Thailand’s Prime Minister has called on leaders
troubled by civil unrest to exercise restraint, less than a year after
a bloody military crackdown on the streets of Bangkok.

Abhisit
Vejjajiva sent in government troops to quell long-running Red Shirt
protests in the Thai capital last May. Ninety-one people died and
hundreds were injured in the street battles that followed.
But
as thousands gathered on the streets of Cairo, Alexandria and Suez to
demand an end to Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year-rule,
Abhisit — speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland
— told CNN leaders should respect the wishes of their people.
Abhisit
said as long as demonstrators did not resort to violence, governments
had a responsibility to restrict the use of force.
“When the
protesters were peaceful [when they] were exercising their
constitutional rights, there was absolutely no need for any kind of
force to be used.
“Unfortunately in the protests in April and
May there was violence — grenades launched, invading hospitals and so
on — and we had to make sure that order had to be preserved.”
He
told CNN: “For us what was important, we needed to enforce the law
[and] at the same time, we had to exercise the utmost restraint, and
try to address whatever legitimate grievances these people on the
streets had.”
“I hope that in a number of countries, they will be able to do the same.”
Asked
to offer advice to Mubarak, the Thai PM said: “He should just respect
the key principles of governance, respect the wishes of the people, and
at the same time do his duties.”
Thailand’s Red Shirt
protesters took to the streets to call for the return of former PM
Thaksin Shinawatra, who was ousted in a coup in 2006.
As the
demonstrations raged, Abhisit’s government imposed a state of
emergency, putting the military in charge of security. It was lifted in
December.
Abhisit has pledged to hold fresh elections before the end of this year. 
Source: CNN International
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Categories: World News
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