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Home >> World
UPDATED: 19:52, September 20, 2006
Roundup: Asia-Pacific reaction to Thailand's military coup
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The sudden bloodless military coup in Thailand has aroused concern, unease and criticism from some Asia-Pacific nations on Wednesday.

In Neighboring country Singapore, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement that Singapore joined the rest of the international community in watching the latest developments in Thailand with concern. Singapore hoped all parties involved would work towards a positive outcome.

"Thailand is an important country in the region and prolonged uncertainties there will be a setback for Thailand and the region as a whole. We hoped that the situation will return to normal as soon as possible." the ministry said.

The ministry advised Singaporeans planning to travel to Thailand to monitor developments there closely and those who already in Thailand to monitor the news, remain in a safe location and avoid areas where there was risk of disturbance.

Indonesian Foreign Affairs Ministry's spokesman Desra Percaya said Wednesday that Indonesia is deeply concerned with the situation in Thailand and urges the neighbor to return to democratic measures to overcome the crisis.

"The Indonesian government is closely monitoring the developments in Thailand with a deep concern," spokesman Desra Percaya was quoted by the country's leading news website Detikcom as saying.

"The Indonesian government also hopes the political crisis in Thailand can be properly settled through democratic steps for the interest of the Thai people," said Percaya, who is accompanying Foreign Minister Hassan Wirajuda in the U.N. General Assembly in New York.

The Indonesian Embassy in Bangkok Wednesday called on Indonesian citizens to refrain from making non-essential trips to Thailand.

In the Philippines, the Philippine military assured earlier Wednesday that there is no coup similar to that in Thailand against President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, stressing the loyalty of the Armed Forces leadership for its commander-in-chief is intact.

Meanwhile, Executive Secretary Eduardo Ermita said the government is confident that President Arroyo will not go the way of Thailand Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, saying the President is in control of the government and the Armed Forces.

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), or the Philippine central bank, said on Wednesday that recent economic gains will shield the Philippines from negative impact arising from a military takeover in Thailand.

"I don't believe it will have a significant and lasting impact on markets," BSP governor Amando Tetangco said of the coup in Thailand.

"For our part, our strong macro-economic fundamentals stemming from fiscal and other reforms will mitigate the risks," he said.

Nepali Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala on Wednesday, reacting to Tuesday's bloodless coup in Thailand, ruled out the possibility of any such action in Nepal and dubbed the army takeover in Thailand as "unfortunate".

Talking to journalists at his official residence in Kathmandu, Koirala made it clear that there is no comparison between the monarchy in Thailand and that in Nepal.

Koirala claimed that there lies no such possibility of any coup like that took place in Thailand in Nepal at a time when all the executive, legislative and constitutional powers of the king have been stripped off.

Koirala also said that the political parties in Nepal are responsible and the sovereignty of the country is vested into the countrymen, hence, Nepal's political scenario should not be compared with the latest political developments in Thailand.

In Seoul, the South Korean government said it will issue a travel advisory to ask its citizens away from Thailand as military coup occurred in Thailand late Tuesday.

"We are worried about the safety of South Korean travelers there," a Foreign Ministry official said. "We will issue a travel advisory on Thailand today."

While a number of countries expressed concern about the Thailand situation, New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark condemned Wednesday the military coup in Thailand and is calling for an immediate restoration of democracy.

"While details of what is happening are still sketchy, I am deeply disturbed by the reporting out of Thailand," said Clark.

"New Zealand condemns any process which seeks to overturn a government by unconstitutional and undemocratic means," said New Zealand Prime Minister.

"New Zealand urges all political and military players to resolve their differences peacefully, and to act in accordance with Thailand's constitution and democratic principles," said Clark.

In Tokyo, the Japanese government on Wednesday urged Thailand to restore democracy.

It was "regrettable" that the armed forces had seized control of Thailand, said Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Aso in a statement.

On Tuesday evening, the Thai military ordered tanks and troops of the Fourth Cavalry Battalion to move into strategic points in Bangkok, and seized control in Bangkok overnight as Prime Minister Thaksin was in New York for the UN General Assembly.

The military dismissed Thaksin, repealed the constitution and promised that the country would swiftly return to democracy after political reforms.

Source: Xinhua


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