August 25, 2022
BANGKOK – Foreign Minister Don Pramudwinai said on Wednesday the perception of Thailand in the eyes of the international community would not be affected by General Prawit Wongsuwan becoming the caretaker prime minister.
Speaking to reporters after learning of the Constitutional Court’s decision to suspend Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha from duty, Don said Prawit had become caretaker prime minister because he was the No. 1 deputy prime minister.
Asked whether Prawit would win acceptance and enjoy the confidence of the international community, Don said there should be no problem because Prawit used to make foreign trips on behalf of the prime minister and he had been received with due respect while serving as defence minister.
The court decided on Wednesday to accept a petition by the opposition seeking a ruling on whether Prayut’s tenure should be regarded as ending on August 24, as he had completed eight years in the post of prime minister since taking the reins on August 24, 2014 after the May 2014 coup. The court suspended Prayut from duty pending its ruling.
Asked whether the incident would affect foreign confidence in the Kingdom, Don said such an incident could happen in any country because it was a domestic affair so the country’s image and reputation would not be affected.
When asked whether the on-going protests against Prayut would affect the country’s hosting of the Apec Summit later this year, Don said since the summit would be held only in November, there was enough time for the political situation to calm down.
“There are four more months to go. So there is nothing to worry,” Don said.
He said if the court makes a final ruling before November, the situation would be clear but it would not affect the hosting of the Apec Summit, irrespective of whether Prayut is reinstated as prime minster.
Don was speaking to reporters after he represented Prayut at an event at Government House to hand out the Prime Minister Award: National Startup 2022, and Prime Minister Award: Innovation for Crisis.