Thai opposition rejects talks after govt refusal

Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva ruled out dissolving parliament and assigned a junior minister to attend the talks.

Thai opposition rejects talks after govt refusal

Opposition activists in Thailand rejected a government offer for "dialogue" on Sunday after Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva ruled out dissolving parliament and assigned a junior minister to attend the talks.

Red-shirted supporters of ousted former premier Thaksin Shinawatra, who rallied for an eighth day on Sunday, insisted they had not closed the door but would talk only with Abhisit and on the condition that house dissolution was on the agenda.

Abhisit earlier said Education Minister Chinnaworn Boonyakiat would represent the government at Monday's talks, which irked the opposition, who have vowed to protest in Bangkok for at least two more weeks, with reinforcements coming in from the provinces.

"We will talk with the prime minister only," one of the protest leaders, Jatuporn Prompan told reporters. "No one will meet with Chinnaworn."

About 30,000 "red shirts" remained at their encampment in Bangkok's historic heart, a day after at least twice that number fanned out across the city on motorcycles and pickup trucks to drum up support for their campaign.

Abhisit has refused to dissolve parliament.

Abhisit said the government was "willing to listen" to the red shirts grievances but immediate house dissolution was not an option.

"Everyone from the coalition parties agree that the government will not dissolve the house," Abhisit said in a televised news conference.

"We should not go into too much detail, but we will probably discuss broad principles such as the right timing for house dissolution, and how," he said in an earlier address.

Protest leaders were planning to raise the intensity of their rally on Monday and Tuesday. They might seek to make Abhisit's job impossible by following him and blocking his every move.

The premier is avoiding his office, parliament and his home for security reasons and has based himself at a heavily fortified military compound, travelling around the city by helicopter.


Agencies

Güncelleme Tarihi: 21 Mart 2010, 17:45

SeydiAli

YORUM EKLE