It’s official. Thailand will go to the polls on July 3. It’s supposed to be a goodnews after more than two tumultuous years of political unrest under Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva’s administration.
It is the first election since street demonstrations in Bangkok last year by the anti-government “Red Shirt” protesters, supporters of deposed former premier Thaksin Shinawatra, led to violent clashes with the security forces that left 91 people dead.
But can the election heal the deeply polarized country and put it back on track? Will it even actually happen? And if it does happen, will the military allow the “wrong side” to win? Unlike many countries where the military stays put in their barracks, Thailand’s military has a long history of meddling in politics.
There have been 18 coup d’états since the end of the absolute monarchy in 1932. The 2006 coup ousted two-time elected former premier Thaksin Shinawatra, now living in exile to avoid corruption charges that he denied.
Full Article: World Blog – Will Thailand’s military allow free elections?.