Interior Minister: Over 10 Million Signatures against Thaksin’s Petition Collected

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The Interior Minister revealed that over 10 million signatures against the royal pardon petition for the former prime minister had been collected and insisted on the transparency of the counter-campaign.

Interior Minister, Chaowarat Chanwirakun claims that 10 million signatures have been collected in opposing the royal pardon petition endeavor. He elaborated that 1.9 million signatures were from Northern provinces, 4.7 millions from the Northeast, 2.3 millions from the Central and Eastern regions and 1.1 millions from the South.

He said he was satisfied with numbers of signatures collected in his ministry’s campaign. Buri Ram province saw the highest number of signatures with 689,926, followed by Nakonratchasrima 610,595 and Rayong 458,308. He insisted Interior Ministry did not force local villagers to sign the campaign.

He added that he considered the ministry’s campaign a success as it could establish good understanding of the regulations for submitting a petition to the public. He said upcountry people finally realized that the petition by the pro-Thaksin movement was against the law.

In addition, Chaowarat insisted on the transparency in his campaign. He stated the names of those who joined the ministry’s counter-campaign would be posted on the provincial websites soon.

As for yesterday’s petition-submitting session by the red-shirt protesters, the Interior Minister said he was happy with the situation as there was no violence. Meanwhile, he called for a national reconciliation and has added that the Interior Ministry’s counter-signature campaign would be terminated.

TAN, 18 August 2009

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