11 July 2024

Future Forward party leader Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit has dared Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan to summon him for questioning whether the party might be linked to a protest, by a group of Mexicans and Peruvians, in front of a hotel in New York where Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha was staying on Monday.

He insisted that the deputy prime minister had no authority to summon him for questioning because he did nothing wrong, but said that he would be willing to provide information if his cooperation is sought.

Thanathorn admitted that he hired a US lobbyist, APCO Worldwide LLC, to arrange his itinerary during his four-day visit to the US in July and to prepare some required legal documents in English.

Since his return to Thailand, he said that he had not had contacted the lobbyists.

Regarding the protest in New York, the Future Forward party leader categorically denied he had anything to do with it and he accused his detractors of trying, with ill intention, to link the protest to his party.

Earlier, Senator Somchai Sawaengkarn urged the Election Commission to look into the issue. He questioned why Thanathorn needed to hire a lobbyist for six months when he actually spent only a few days in the US.

Thanathorn and other key members of the opposition block were in Thailand’s southernmost province of Pattani today to attend a panel discussion as part of the opposition’s campaign to solicit public support for the rewriting of the Constitution.