Thai PM orders justice minister to conduct new probe into extra-judicial killings

15:44, June 10, 2010      

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Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva on Thursday assigned Pirapan Salirathavibhaga to revive an independent committee investigating extra-judicial killings during the war on drugs by the Thaksin Shinawatra-led government, the Thai News Agency (TNA) reported.

The panel, set up by the Surayud Chulanont-led administration, which was installed after the September 19, 2006 coup, was chaired by former Attorney-General Khanit na Nakhon.

Khamphi Kaewcharoen, a former attorney-general, has been approached to head the committee, replacing Khanit, Pirapan said.

Selection of the committee's members will be also be managed by Khamphi, the justice minister said.

A list of the committee's members will be submitted to the cabinet next week, Pirapan said.

As many as 2,500 people were killed in drug suppression operations. Of these, about 1,400 were claimed to have been killed by fellow drug dealers, who feared they would turn informant, the Bnagkok Post's website reported.

"I think, the government wants to continue with the work of the old government in order to establish the facts without hidden political purposes or an intention of taking legal action against anyone," Pirapan said.



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