Democrat Party denies rift

The Democrat Party has denied that divisions have emerged and that some members are planning to break away.

Mallika Boonmeetrakul, a deputy spokesperson for the party, was responding to a local report that some former Democrat MPs planned to form another political group with Suthep Thaugsuban, who led the protests against the Yingluck Shinawatra government.

Miss Mallika quoted Mr Suthep as saying that after finishing his fight against the influence of former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, he would return home to work as a community leader and help local people.

Mr Suthep, a native of the southern province of Surat Thani, was a former deputy prime minister under Abhisit Vejjajiva and was the party's top political strategist and dealmaker. He resigned his party and MP positions last November to lead the People's Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC).

He swore repeatedly in addresses from PDRC rally stages that "the old Suthep" was dead and he would never engage in electoral politics again after the protests ended.

Miss Mallika said Mr Suthep had always stressed that his PDRC activities were personal and had nothing to do with the Democrat Party.

However, the PDRC campaign attracted many other Democrat MPs, seven of whom resigned their seats along with Mr Suthep.

Miss Mallika insisted that all Democrat executives remained united and were coordinating activities.

In the meantime, she said, the party was waiting to hear more about the national reform initiatives of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO).

The NCPO staged the May 22 coup that ousted the Yingluck government, achieving what six months of PDRC protests had been unable to do.

Related search: hailand, politics, Democrat Party, Suthep Thaugsuban

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