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 No post-poll coup Army chief vows

No post-poll coup Army chief vows

Gen Chalermpol Srisawat, chief of the defence forces, on Tuesday gave assurances that the military would not stage a coup after the next general election.

He was reacting to reporters’ questions about how the military would react if there were to be a shift in the political landscape in the wake of the next general election.

Gen Chalermpol made the remarks after meeting with the leaders of the three armed forces as well as the police chief.

Gen Chalermpol said the armed forces had no role in politics, but like other state agencies, they serve as a government mechanism to administer the country and are therefore obliged to follow its policy.

He said their responsibilities were legally defined and designated and, like the general public, they expected to see the country’s democratic development continue under a constitutional monarchy.

“No matter what the situation is, the military will go about its work.

“The public can be assured of that,” he said.

When asked if he could give assurances the military would not intervene in politics, Gen Chalermpol insisted there would not be a coup.

Army commander Narongpan Jitkaewtae echoed similar sentiments.

Meanwhile, Progressive Movement Chairman Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit posted on Facebook on Tuesday that an amnesty for politicians involved in political conflicts since the 2014 coup, especially those charged with violating the lese majeste law, would be a first major step toward bringing about reconciliation.

However, Mr Thanathorn said an amnesty alone would not be sufficient and that people should be able to discuss reforming the institution of the monarchy.

He said that is merely freedom of expression, not a crime.

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