Thailand's neutral policy on Russia-Ukraine conflict 'in national interest'

Thailand's neutral policy on Russia-Ukraine conflict 'in national interest'

Officials check the details of the final group of 12 Thais evacuated from Ukraine, after they arrived at Suvarnabhumi airport on Tuesday. (Photo: Foreign Ministry)
Officials check the details of the final group of 12 Thais evacuated from Ukraine, after they arrived at Suvarnabhumi airport on Tuesday. (Photo: Foreign Ministry)

The government has defended its position on the Russian war against Ukraine, saying its neutral stance was intended to best serve "the national interest".

Government spokesman Thanakorn Wangboonkongchana on Thursday reiterated the Thai position on the war in Ukraine, to stay neutral in tandem with the position of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean).

The government's priority was the evacuation of Thai citizens from Ukraine, while advocating  the need for a peaceful solution to the "crisis", he said.

In its reaction, the government did not mention Russia's invasion of Ukraine on Feb 24. The  kingdom supported a United Nations resolution passsed at an emergency meeting on March 2 calling for Russian forces to withdraw from Ukraine and deploring Russia's "aggression against Ukraine".

"The policy has been implemented for the utmost interests of the nation and the people," Mr Thanakorn said.

There were about 250 Thais living in Ukraine when the invasion began, with 31 deciding to stay in Ukraine. The final 12 Thais leaving the east European country arrived in Bangkok on Tuesday, bringing the total number of returnees to 223, according to the Foreign Ministry.

The Asean foreign ministers meeting on Feb 26 omitted to mention Russia in their final statement.


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