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Thaksin returns to the US

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Former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra is back in the same country and the same city that he was visiting when he was ousted by a coup in 2006. 

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The Thais who showed up at Pongsri Restaurant to greet Thaksin on Tuesday were mostly good natured and no incidents were reported. (Post Today photo)

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Thaksin returns to the US

Former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra is back in the same country and the same city that he was visiting when he was ousted by a coup in 2006.

The fugitive ex-premier landed in New York on Tuesday, local time, and went for dinner at a downtown restaurant where supporters and opponents greeted him in a small demonstration.

Thaksin appeared to be accompanied by three Thai bodyguards wearing red shirts.

He was greeted by the owner and staff of the Pongsri Thai restaurant in the central Manhattan section of New York City.

In a photo widely-distributed on the internet, Thaksin is seen being greeted outside the restaurant.

As he ate, a couple of dozen Thais were on the pavement outside. A few of the hand- and foot-clappers favoured at Bangkok rallies were seen, both in yellow and red. One Thai woman had a combination red-yellow clapper.

There were no incidents or confrontations, and the Thais who went to greet Thaksin at Pongsri restaurant were mostly good-natured.

There has been no word from Washington on how Thaksin obtained a visa since US law bans convicted felons from receiving visas or entering the US.

On the other hand, the US government can give waivers. It was not known if this had happened in Thaksin's case. It also is unknown whether he used his Thai passport or one from another country.

Not surprisingly, Thaksin’s opponents back here in Thailand immediately called for his extradition.

Suriyasai Katasila, the coordinator of the Green Politics Group lashed out at the United States for allegedly breaching its extradition treaty with Thailand.

He said Thailand had cooperated with the US in the past, extraditing the terrorist Hambali and the weapons dealer Viktor Bout.

Earlier ex-foreign minister Kasit Piromya had even suggested Thailand should break relations with Washington if US authorities allowed Thaksin to visit.

That’s clearly not going to happen under the present Thai government.

show up – to arrive at a place แสดงตัว, ปรากฏตัว
good-natured – kind, friendly and patient when dealing with people งมีใจเมตตา,  ใจดี
incident – something that happens, usually something bad เหตุการณ์
ousted – forced out of a position of power ขับออกจากอำนาจ
coup (d’etat) – the seizure of power in a country by a group of people, usually members of the armed forces รัฐประหาร
fugitive – someone who has been accused of doing something illegal and is trying to avoid being caught by the police ผู้หลบหนี
local – in or related to the area that you live, or to the particular area that you are talking about  ท้องถิ่น
opponent – someone who disagrees with you or who is competing against you  ผู้ไม่เห็นด้วยกับ,  ฝ่ายตรงข้าม
demonstration – an occasion when a group of people gather together to support or protest about something การชุมนุม
appear – to seem ดูเหมือนจะ, ดูเหมือนว่า
accompany – to go with someone ไปกับ,ไปด้วยกัน
bodyguard – a person or a group of people who are employed to protect somebody องครักษ์,คนคุ้มกัน
pavement – a path with a hard surface beside a road. The American word is sidewalk ทางเดิน, ฟุตบาท
clapper – an object with two parts that you shake or hit together to make noise  มือตบ
favoured – liked more then other things
rally – a large public gathering of people to support someone or to protest against something การชุมนุม
combination – the mixture you get when two or more things are combined การรวมกัน
confrontation – a situation in which people or groups are arguing angrily or are fighting การเผชิญหน้า
obtain – to get something that you want or need, especially by going through a process that is difficult ได้มา, ได้รับ
ban – to officially say that someone is not allowed to do something   ห้ามอย่างเป็นทางการ
convicted – having been proven guilty of a crime by a court of law ต้องโทษ, ได้รับการพิสูจน์ว่าข้อกล่าวหามีความผิดจริง
felon – a person who has committed a felony, a serious crime  ผู้กระทำความผิดอาญาร้ายแรง
waiver – an official statement or document that says a right, claim, or law can be officially ignored or given up เอกสารสละสิทธิ
immediately – happening right after something else with no delay; right away ทันที
extradition – sending someone accused of a crime back to the country where the crime was committed for trial or punishment  การส่งผู้ร้ายข้ามแดน
coordinator – someone whose job is to organise the various parts of an activity and make sure that all the people involved work well together ผู้ประสานงาน
lash out – to criticise someone or something angrily  ประนามอย่างรุนแรง
allegedly – claimed to have done something wrong, but not yet proven ที่กล่าวหา
breach – to fail to follow a law or rule ละเมิดกฎข้อบังคับ
treaty – a written agreement between two or more countries formally approved and signed by their leaders ข้อตกลง, สนธิสัญญา
cooperation – a situation in which people or organisations work together to achieve a result that will benefit all of them  การร่วมมือกัน
terrorist – of someone who uses violence in order to  achieve political aims ผู้ก่อการร้าย
dealer – a person or company that buys and sells a particular product ผู้จำหน่าย
relations – the way in which two people, groups or countries behave towards each other or deal with each other ความสัมพันธ์
authorities – people who have the power to make decisions or enforce the law เจ้าหน้าที่ผู้มีอำนาจ

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