Thailand PM agrees to discuss constitutional reforms

[JURIST] Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra [official profile] has agreed to meet with opposition leaders to discuss constitutional reforms, after the parties threatened to boycott the April elections. Thaksin dissolved Parliament [AP report] on February 24 in response to street protests calling for his removal and set general elections for April 2. One issue on the ballot will be whether to amend the country's nine-year-old constitution [text], a move which Thaksin announced [JURIST report] two weeks ago. Thaksin's Thai Rak Thai party has endorsed some changes to the constitution, but opposition parties are calling for expansive reforms, including a reduction of the required votes in parliament to censure the prime minister and a decreased minimum time that election candidates are required to be a member of a particular party before running for office.

Public dissatisfaction with Thaksin, who was re-elected last year, has recently grown, although earlier this month he survived an impeachment attempt [JURIST report] involving his ownership of shares in a telecommunications company that he helped to found. AFP has more. The Bangkok Post has local coverage.



 

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