Asean’s Albatross
covering burma and southeast asia
Monday, October 15, 2018

Asean’s Albatross

By Asda Jayanama Thursday, March 24, 2005

(Page 5 of 5)

In the case of Burma—I have talked to some Burmese exiles about this and I think they were a little shocked—there should be some physical resistance. You cannot rely on outsiders alone.


Q: Critics say Thailand’s own human rights record has been deteriorating over the past few years. Do you see cause for concern with regard to Thailand’s relations within the international community?


A: We are concerned, and even Thaksin says he is now concerned. And he’s concerned because the US is concerned.


Q: Prime Minister Thaksin has voiced condemnation of the UN. He declared, for instance, that “the UN is not my father” in response to criticisms of his government’s 2003 war on drugs. How does this affect Thailand’s relationship with the UN?


A: Thaksin doesn’t know anything about the UN and I can tell you that this is not just hearsay. I have first-hand experience. I was director-general of the International Organizations Department [of the foreign ministry] when Thaksin came in as foreign minister for a few months. Thaksin was smart in that he organized a seminar for senior officials of the ministry and in that seminar he asked all of us to vote on our priorities for foreign policy. Thaksin thought there were too many priorities. He wanted only four priorities to make things easier so he suggested we just discard the United Nations as a priority and ignore it.


Q: What is your opinion of Deputy Prime Minister Surakiart Sathirathai’s campaign for the post of UN secretary general of the UN? What are his chances?


A: And now Surakiart wants to be secretary general, which is ridiculous. He knows nothing about the UN and he wants to lead the UN. I think there is no way at all Surakiart will ever make it as secretary general of the UN.

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