A Change of Guard

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Monday, 18 July 2016

Thai military lambastes critics over Turkey coup comparison

by Asian Correspondent Staff | 18th July 2016 | @ascorrespondent

Pic: AP

Pic: AP
Pic: AP

THAILAND’S junta government has rubbished critics’ comparisons to the recent foiled coup d’état in Turkey, saying those who criticized the Thai military have taken the two instances out of context.

National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) spokesperson Col. Winthai Suwaree said that Thailand’s military takeover in 2014 was ‘unique’ as it was under different circumstances.

Those who made the comparisons between Thailand and Turkey, he said, were “not creative” in their attempts to make international headlines, Matichon Online reported (via Prachatai English).

“Normally, in order to compare different events, people must also think of different social contexts, not just trying to take advantage of popular news to voice certain opinions without concrete information to confuse the people and society,” Winthai told reporters on Sunday.

According to the Bangkok Post, Winthai said the Thai public could generally see through the intentions of the critics and knew Thailand’s unique political situation that warranted the coup in May 2014.

“I believe most people can tell what the critics’ intention is. I also believe most people in and outside the country know what we were going through and know that our situation is different from other countries. But, some might have forgotten,” he said.

On Saturday, Thai Prime Minister Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha expressed condolences for those slain in the botched coup attempt.

Despite international concerns, Prayuth said many countries have shown encouragement for the upcoming draft constitution referendum on Aug 7.

SEE ALSO: Thailand army tightens media control ahead of draft charter referendum

Turkey is still reeling from Friday’s failed coup attempt that plunged the capital, Ankara, and Istanbul into a night of violence.

Sunday marked a day of funerals for some of the victims and arrests of scores of alleged coup supporters within the military and judiciary system.

The latest death toll from Friday’s failed coup attempt in Turkey stands at 294.

A Turkish official said more than 190 citizens, most of them military, were killed and more than 1,400 people were wounded in Friday’s failed coup attempt.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity in line with government rules, said the fatalities excluded “terrorists” in reference to those who acted against the government.

At last count, government officials said at least 104 conspirators were killed in the unrest.

Turkey’s justice minister Bekir Bozdag says some 6,000 people have been detained in a government crackdown on alleged coup plotters and government opponents.

Additional reporting by Associated Press

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