11 July 2024

The House Committee for Security Affairs, National Borders, Strategy and Reform has agreed to invite Army Commander-in-Chief General Apirat Kongsompong to an “exchange of views” on October 21st over the controversial speech he gave at the Army headquarters last week.

The committee spokesman, Mr Phiradet Kamsamut of the Future Forward party, said today (Tuesday) that the committee felt that General Apirat’s lecture had attracted a lot of mixed opinions on social media and expects that he will accept the invitation.

In his lecture, entitled “Our land from security perspective” before an invited audience, General Apirat alleged that a number of ill-intentioned politicians and hard-core communist remnants were waging “hybrid warfare” to destroy the country.

General Apirat later said, through the army spokesman, that he didn’t force anyone to believe what he said about “hybrid warfare”.

Meanwhile, political activist Srisuwan Janya today submitted a complaint to the National Anti-Corruption Commission seeking an investigation of General Apirat for alleged violation of the Defence Ministry’s code of ethical conduct over his controversial speech.

Srisuwan said that the army chief’s speech was politically biased and might fuel division in the country.  Military top brass, he added, must be politically impartial.

In the same complaint, Srisuwan also asked the NACC to probe Future Forward party leader Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit for his alleged meddling in the Hong Kong protests, citing a picture showing him with Joshua Wong, a pro-democracy leader in Hong Kong.

He noted that Thanathorn’s alleged interference prompted the Chinese Embassy to issue a statement warning an unnamed Thai politician, understood to be Thanathorn, not to interfere in China’s internal affairs, which it described as a serious and irresponsible act which could affect the good relationship between China and Thailand.