Nalinee stays on

Insisting her relations with the Mugabe family are strictly social, Nalinee Taveesin rejected calls for her to step down from the cabinet.

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Nalinee Taveesin at her press conference yesterday, insisting that she had done nothing illegal and her affiliations with Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace Mugabe were "strictly social". PATTANAPONG HIRUNARD


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Nalinee refuses to quit

Mugabe ties 'strictly social, not political'

Pradit Ruangdit

Newly appointed cabinet member Nalinee Taveesin yesterday rejected calls for her to step down following alleged business connections with the Zimbabwe regime and subsequent financial sanctions by the US.

Ms Nalinee, who is scheduled to be sworn in today, firmly told a press conference that she had done nothing illegal and her affiliations with Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace Mugabe were "strictly social".

The US Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control has imposed financial sanctions against her for her alleged involvement in several financial, real estate and gem transactions on behalf of Mrs Mugabe.

This follows Washington's sanctions on Mr Mugabe and people in his close circle for human rights abuses, political violence and partisan prosecutions, and those who provide assistance to the sanctioned targets.

Ms Nalinee said that over the years she has acted as a liaison officer for the Zimbabwean president and his wife during their visits to the Kingdom and helped coordinate and provide advice to their family members who pursued their studies here.

"Our relations have grown socially, not for business purposes," said Ms Nalinee, who was accompanied by Pheu Thai MPs and classmates of ousted prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra from the armed forces preparatory school.

She said that she never imagined her friendship and hospitality would result in her being sanctioned and the issue being politicised.

"I have never imagined that friendship will have adverse effects on me, especially when I've decided to enter politics," she said.

Ms Nalinee also pointed out that she was sanctioned, not blacklisted, by Washington.

She said that the word "blacklist" is being used to distort the facts or cause misunderstanding that she might have been involved in serious crimes such as arms smuggling or drug trafficking.

"To put it simply, it means that American people can't do business with me and I am prohibited from holding assets in the US," she said.

"The sanctions cover only American citizens. They have nothing to do with people of other countries and their governments."

Ms Nalinee said concerns that her appointment as a PM's Office minister would affect the country's business opportunities were groundless.

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press conference – an official meeting where someone makes a formal statement about a particular issue or event to journalists and answers their questions about it การแถลงข่าว
insist – to keep saying very firmly that something is true, even when other people will not believe you ยืนกราน
illegal – against the law ผิดกฎหมาย, นอกกฎหมาย
affiliation – connected with an organisation, person, group, etc. การผูกพัน
strictly – in a very limited way; only เพียงแค่, อย่างแท้จริง
refuse – to say you will not do something that someone has asked you to do ปฏิเสธ
ties – relations; connections ความสัมพันธ์
appointed – officially chosen for a job ถูกแต่งตั้ง
cabinet – the group of government ministers who make and approve government policy คณะรัฐมนตรี
reject – to not agree with a request, offer or proposal ปฏิเสธ ไม่ยอมรับ
alleged – claimed to be true although not yet proven ที่ถูกกล่าวหา
regime – a government that controls a country, especially in a strict or unfair way รัฐบาลที่ขึ้นมาปกครองโดยการยึดอำนาจ
subsequent – happening or coming after something else ซึ่งตามมา
financial – involving money เกี่ยวกับเงิน, ทางการเงิน
sanction – an official order, such as the stopping of trade or business dealings, which is taken against a country, group or person in order to make it obey international law  การคว่ำบาตร
scheduled – planned to happen at a particular time or day ตามตารางเวลา
swear in – to make someone give a formal promise at an official ceremony, especially at the beginning of an important job สาบานตนเข้ารับตำแหน่ง, กล่าวคำปฏิญาณเพื่อรับตำแหน่งหน้าที่
firmly – in a strong or definite way อย่างหนักแน่น
treasury – the system or government department responsible for financial matters such as spending and taxation ระบบการคลัง
assets – things owned by a person, company etc., particularly money and property ทรัพย์สิน
impose – to force someone to accept something กำหนด,บังคับ
real estate – property อสังหาริมทรัพย์
gem – a jewel (= precious stone), especially when cut into a particular regular shape อัญมณี, เพชรพลอย
transaction – a business dealing  การติดต่อทางธุรกิจ
on behalf of – as a representative of ในนามของ ในฐานะของ
human rights – the basic rights which it is generally considered all people should have, such as justice and the freedom to say what you think สิทธิมนุษยชน
abuse – cruel, violent tor unfair treatment, especially of someone who does not have the power to prevent it
violence – physical force with the deliberate intention of causing damage to property or injury or death to people ความรุนแรง
partisan – showing strong and usually unfair support for one particular person, group, or idea ซึ่งถือพรรคถือพวก, ซึ่งลำเอียง
prosecution –the process of accusing someone of a crime and asking a court of law to judge them การดำเนินคดีตามกฎหมาย
assistance – help; aid ความช่วยเหลือ
target –a person, business, building, area, etc., that someone intends to attack, deal with, sell something to, etc. เป้าหมาย
liaison – a person whose job is to make sure there is a good relationship between two groups or organizations  ผู้ประสานงาน
coordinate – to organise the different parts of a job or plan so that the people involved work together effectively ประสานงานกัน
advice – an opinion or a suggestion about what somebody should do in a particular situation  คำแนะนำ
pursue – to try to achieve something ดำเนินตาม
accompany – to go with someone ไปกับ,ไปด้วยกัน,ไปเป็นเพื่อน
classmate – a person who is or was in the same class as you at school or college เพื่อนร่วมชั้นเรียน
ousted – forced out of a position of power ขับออกจากอำนาจ
imagine – to form a picture of something or someone in your mind นึกคิด, จินตนาการ, นึกฝัน
hospitality – friendly and generous behaviour towards visitors and guests, intended to make them feel welcome การให้การต้อนรับด้วยความยินดี
issue – a subject that people discuss or argue about ประเด็น
politicise – to bring something to the attention of the public so that it can be discussed or debated, especially a political matter  อภิปรายเรื่องการเมือง
adverse – having a negative or harmful effect on something ในทางลบ, เป็นผลร้าย
blacklist – a list of the names of people, companies, products or countries that an organization or a government considers unacceptable and that must be avoided บัญชีดำ,  รายชื่อผู้ที่รัฐบาลไม่ยอมรับหรือต้องถูกหลีกเลี่ยง
distort – to change something such as information so that it is not longer true or accurate  บิดเบือน
smuggling – secretly and illegally taking goods or people into or out of a country ลักลอบขนสินค้าหรือคนหรือสัตว์เข้าและออกจากประเทศอย่างผิดกฎหมาย
trafficking – dealing in illegal goods, like drugs, weapons or in illegally moving humans from one place to another การค้าสิ่งที่ผิดกฎหมาย
citizen – someone who has the right to live permanently in a particular country พลเมือง
prohibited –officially stopped from being done, especially by making it illegal (มีคำสั่ง)ห้าม
concern – a worry ความกังวล
groundless – based on no good reasons or facts ไม่มีมูลความจริง

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About the author

columnist
Writer: Terry Fredrickson
Position: Education Marketing and Support Manager