Removal of Thaksin's police rank should not used for rally: Thai Deputy PM

15:52, October 29, 2009      

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The anti-government group should not use removal of the police rank of ousted former Thai premier Thaksin Shinawatra as a factor to hold a rally in order to topple the government, Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban said Thursday.

From Tuesday the Office of the Council of State has advised the Secretariat of the cabinet to remove the "Police Lieutenant-Colonel" police rank of Thaksin since he was convicted two-year-jail term for violating conflict of interest law in the controversial Bangkok's Ratchadapisek land purchase deal last year.

The Office of the Council of State, which is the government's legal-advisory agency, has also advised the Secretariat of the cabinet to recall Thaksin's decorations.

Suthep has reiterated that the matters concerning Thaksin's police rank and decorations are the normal legal procedure, Thai News Agency reported.

Also, the government has not pressured any involved authority regarding the legal procedure for the removal of the police rank and decorations of Thaksin, Suthep said.

Thaksin was ousted by the military coup in September, 2006, in accusation of corruption, and has been kept in exile since then.

Thaksin returned to Thailand in February, 2008 to face corruption charges, but he later fled into exile again and was convicted in absentia.

After the advice by the Office of the Council of State has been made public, it is feared the United front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD) will stage the anti-government rally.

Thaksin has been perceived as the real leader of the UDD group or the red-shirted people.

Source: Xinhua
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