Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Open letter to my MP regarding Thaksin

Dear Mr Denham,

I am a native of Southampton SO19 and now a long term resident of Thailand, where I have been working as a Social Studies teacher in a well known school for one year. I have voted Labour in the past two elections and, in fact, I plan to run for local election myself on my return.

Mr Denham, as a member of your constituency and also a member of a Thai family I would like to register my serious concern on the arrival and business transactions of Thaksin Shinwatra in England.

As you are no doubt aware, Thaksin was ousted in a bloodless coup last year. I am aware that Mr Shinwatra has referred to this undemocratic manoeuvre several times in the English press in an effort to assert his innocence. This is simply not the case.

Thaksin Shinwatra is currently under investigation by a non military, non partisan panel of investigators for numerous alleged acts of corruption involving himself and his family. Nearly all of these alleged offences were reported well before the coup took place. Prosecutors are currently assembling documentary, circumstantial and eyewitness evidence in preparation for a court hearing on several cases.

Mr Thaksin was also subject to a great number of complaints concerning human rights during his "War on drugs" campaign. During this time, a great number of deaths occurred in the country, many of them in highly suspicious circumstances. None of the deaths were investigated during Mr Thaksin's regime.

Finally, Mr Thaksin imposed great pressure on the free press during his tenure as PM. The country's only independent TV station was bought out by a Thaksin business with several critical reporters sacked. English language press came under threats and proxy take over bids, and many radio stations were closed down.

It is true that the prosecutions for corruption are coming indirectly from a non elected junta. However, many charges would have been made already if it were not for the fact that sections of the press, the senate, the judiciary and nearly every independent checking body had come under the influence of Mr Thaksin and his now defunct Thai Rak Thai party during his regime.

TheThai DSI has already confirmed that an extradition order will be made against Mr Thaksin if he does not arrive to hear charges within one month.

I would be happy to provide references to any of the above cited facts at your request.

As I type this, I am informed that AMLO has discovered several sizeable bank accounts in the name of Mr Thaksin in England. He has already been accused of - and denied - illegally channeling money out of Thailand.

Mr Denham, I understand that your right honourable friend David Taylor has already raised this issue in Parliament. As a Southampton Itchen constituent, I would humbly request that the issue of Mr Thaksin and his presence in England is raised again, with the question being : a) Is this truly the kind of guest we welcome in England? and b) Can we pledge to the authorities in Thailand that Mr Thaksin will be extradited if a formal request is made?

I thank you for your kind attention to this matter. Thank you for your work on behalf of the people of Southampton.

Yours sincerely ,


(UK address supplied)

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