Sonthi plays coup card
Coup leader Sonthi Boonyaratkalin refused to rule out staging another coup d'etat if the People Power party (PPP) loyal to ex-premier Thaksin Shinwatra wins the election on December 23.
"It is a future matter that we shall have to wait and see," Deputy Prime Minister Sonthi said when he was asked whether a coup will be staged if PPP gets to form a new government.
He also countered PPP leader Samak Sundaravej's statement that the party's victory will mean ousted premier Thaksin Shinawatra was right all along, saying that the court is the only one to decide whether Mr Thaksin committed any wrongdoing.
"Laws, not statements of anyone, will tell whether he is right or wrong," Gen Sonthi told reporters.
He also challenged Mr Thaksin to return to Thailand, saying "he can return now so we can prosecute him."
Meanwhile, acting chairman of the Council for National Security (CNS) Chalit Phukphasuk said the CNS is not worried if Mr Samak brings back Mr Thaksin's regime if his party wins the election.
Under a democratic system, people will decide what is good for the country, he said.
Gen Chalit, also chief of air force, insisted the CNS and the military will maintain politically neutral and will not get involved in politics in any way.
Officers who are found to have involved in political acts will faced harsh punishment, he added.
Bangkok Post Nov. 10, 2007