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  • THAILAND

    Vote prospects in Thailand's long transition

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 05/08/2016

    » Thailand's second-ever referendum on its second consecutive military-inspired constitution in 10 years should be a foregone conclusion. The government of Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha that seized power in May 2014 has deployed all instruments and organs of the state from village headmen and upcountry teachers to the entire bureaucratic apparatus and official media propaganda to ensure the charter's passage. The Referendum Act, a law that effectively prohibits open and inclusive debate and public discussion, has been enacted for good measure to keep the draft constitution on course. Yet what appears like a one-way state-sponsored campaign for referendum approval may boomerang into a rejection owing to several factors.

  • THAILAND

    Sputtering populism turns up political temperature

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 26/07/2013

    » As it approaches the midway point of its four-year term next month, the Yingluck Shinawatra government's broad policy platform appears to be sputtering.

  • THAILAND

    Thailand's stalemate and uneasy accommodation

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 15/02/2013

    » Thailand has regained relative calm and stability over the past year. After the worst floods in half a century subsided in early 2012, on the back of political crisis and turmoil that date back to 2005, Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra's government has some breathing space to roll out its consumption-driven "populist" policy agenda.

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