Senators on Sunday condemned a Thai chef who berated and chased their colleague, Khunying Porntip Rojanasunan, out of a restaurant in Iceland over her political views.
In the video of the incident, which went viral on social media over the weekend, chef Ari Alexander Guðjónsson could be seen singling out Khunying Porntip, who dropped by at his restaurant with a group of friends, telling her to leave the premises immediately in both Thai and English. He ordered her out in a highly public fashion while filming a clip on his phone.
The chef said he used to admire the senator, who is a renowned forensic expert, but changed his view of Khunying Porntip after seeing "what she did to the country", without elaborating further. Khunying Porntip and her friends left without any incident.
Senator Wanchai Sornsiri slammed the chef's behaviour as "rough", saying no one deserves to be treated in such a manner, as it breeds division in society that could trigger conflicts.
Mr Wanchai called on the public to denounce the chef's behaviour, saying he must harbour deep grudges against Khunying Porntip to lash out that way.
Khunying Porntip is known to have abstained in the first round of voting for the country's next prime minister, in which Move Forward Party (MFP) leader Pita Limjaroenrat failed to secure enough support to assume the post. She also condemned MFP supporters who harassed those senators who didn't share their views.
Senator Somchai Swangkarn, meanwhile, took to Facebook to say he admired Khunying Porntip's devotion to forensic science following her involvement in the 2004 tsunami disaster. He said she didn't deserve to be treated the way she was treated in Iceland, considering her contribution.
MFP leader Chaithawat Tulathon said the chef's view mirrors many people's sentiments towards senators during the vote. He said many felt their vote was not respected, noting such incidents could be avoided if the rules are revised to ensure people's voices are heard.
Chartthaipattana leader Varawut Silpa-archa said people should treat each other with respect even if they have different opinions.