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Thai junta gives ex-PM green light to go abroad

  • The Associated Press
  • Published Wednesday, July 16, 2014, at 10:28 p.m.
  • Updated Wednesday, July 16, 2014, at 11:08 p.m.

— Thailand's military government gave permission for former premier Yingluck Shinawatra to travel overseas for the first time since they overthrew her government in May, a spokesman said on Thursday.

Thai media speculated that Yingluck, accompanied by her son, will go to France to celebrate the birthday of her brother, Thaksin Shinawatra, who was ousted in a 2006 coup and fled overseas in 2008 to avoid a corruption conviction. Thaksin turns 65 on July 26.

The junta agreed to Yingluck's request to leave Thailand on a personal trip to Europe from July 20 to Aug. 10 since she "has not violated any orders of the NCPO or any agreements, being the ban from politics or the ban on overseas travels" and "has given good cooperation all along," said junta spokesman Col. Winthai Suvaree.

Yingluck, along with other former Cabinet ministers, were summoned and held briefly by the military after they took power on May 22. Upon their release, the detainees were asked to sign a form saying they will not go abroad without the junta's permission and that they will not engage in any kind of political action.

Yingluck, the country's first female leader, was ousted in May in a court case over her abuse of power, a few weeks before the military staged a coup.

She is currently facing charges of dereliction of duty in overseeing a contentious rice subsidy program.

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