DIRTY TRICKS? Riot audio tape doctored : PM

abhisit_voiceclip

Red shirts say clip evidence of attempt to incite mayhem

PM knows sources of voice clip

Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva yesterday denied ordering a violent dispersal of the red shirts during the Songkran mayhem in April, insisting the audio clip featuring his voice was edited.

He described the audio tape as a “dirty trick” originating from a former prime minister’s network.

“It is unbelievable. This method can risk causing confusion and violence within the country. I will take legal action against people who did it,” Abhisit said.

“The audio clip was definitely doctored because I can confirm I have never issued any such instruction on crowd control,” he said.

He was reacting to an audio clip circulated on the Internet in which a voice like his instructs security forces to use violence against red-shirt protesters during the April chaos, so that the government could impose an emergency decree to control the situation.

The red shirts claimed the audio clip is evidence of Abhisit’s attempt to incite mayhem as a pretext to declare a state of emergency.

Deputy Premier Suthep Thaugsuban said the doctored audio clip was aimed at inducing hatred towards the prime minister.

PM’s Office Minister Satit Wongnontaey said after listening to the clip that the prime minister did not make such an order during the volatile political situation in April.

Chuan Leekpai, former Democrat Party leader and the chief party adviser, also vouched for Abhisit, saying he believed the prime minister would never speak that way.

Abhisit admitted the voice at the beginning of the clip belonged to him, but that part of the content was not what he had said.

“The audio clip was edited because the levels of sound were different,” said the prime minister, “I affirm that I have never said these words in such a combination.”

The premier said his policy to deal with the so-called red shirt protesters is clearly based on the rule of law and respect for human rights.

Abhisit said he was ready to clarify any doubts regarding the audio clip and blamed those behind it of intending to hurt the country and incite violence. He also warned such audio editing could be illegal. The premier said he had clues some people who disseminated the clip belonged to a political party with close ties to a former prime minister’s network. They must be held responsible if the audio clip was proven to be edited, he said.

“It’s incredible they used dirty tactics to cause disturbances in the country,” said Abhisit, “I will take legal action against those involved.”

The prime minister said he had instructed national police chief General Patcharawat Wongsuwan to check the authenticity of the clip and its source.

Special Branch commander Police Lt-General Theeradej Rodphothong said he expected the examination result soon. He said the Special Branch is now checking who had released the clip, saying it was first aired at a red-shirt rally in Udon Thani province.

“It is still unconfirmed whether the voice heard in the clip is the premier’s,” said Theeradej, admitting that “if the clip is not real, it is seamlessly edited.”

Meanwhile, Jatuporn Prompan, an opposition Pheu Thai Party MP and key red-shirt leader, said the prime minister and his Cabinet should resign if the clip turned out to be authentic.

Jatuporn said he had listened to the clip some time ago and said he prayed it was not the voice of the prime minister. However the speech was so smooth it sounded authentic.

He added the opposition party would not have accused the premier, as the use of a ‘dirty tactic’ is not its style.

The Pheu Thai MP said he had no idea who was behind the clip, but that Abhisit must be aware what he had said and to whom. “Abhisit must prove his claims the clip was edited,” said Jatuporn.

By The Nation
Published on August 28, 2009

 

PM: Altered audio clip misleading

Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva has insisted the audio clip emailed to the public that sounded like his voice had been edited and was misleading. The voice on the clip orders officials to use force against red-shirt protesters during the Songkran riots in April.

“I have listened to the clip and it is definitely an edited clip because I have never given out such order,” Mr Abhisit said on Thursday.

He said he was ready to prove this fact to the public.

The altered voice message was emailed to the public to mislead people into believing the government had been looking for an excuse to impose the state of emergency to deal with the protesters in April, he said.

He insisted that his policy in dealing with public gatherings is based on the law and the principle of rights and freedom of the people.

The altered audio clip was the work of people with the ill intention of causing misunderstanding and instigating unrest, he said

“I can hardly believe that there are people who would resort to such dirty means to create disorder and violence in the country. I will take legal action against whoever is involved,” Mr Abhisit said.

The voice clip was also played by DStation, the satellite TV channel operated by the anti-government United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD).

The prime minister warned the red-shirt group not to spread the audio it because he would take legal action against them as well.

Mr Abhisit said he knew that those who emailed this audio clip were connected to politicians and companies with links to a former prime minister, but did not say outright that the person was Thaksin Shinawatra.

Asked whether those involved would be arrested, the prime minister said it would be good if this could be done because this should not happen to anyone.

Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban, who is in charge of security affairs, said the clip was clearly edited in a way to discredit the government. Asked what the government would do if the opposition asked that the clip be played in parliament, he said it was House Speaker Chai Chidchob who would make a decision.

He believed the public were well enough informed to decide themselves whether the clip was credible or not, but he would ask officials to examine it.

Deputy Interior Minister Thavorn Senniam said he was with the prime minister during the Songkran riots all the time but never heard him give such an order.

Democrat party advisory chairman Chuan Leekpai said he could guarantee that Mr Abhisit had not ordered use of force as alleged. It was the work of some people who wanted to create a condition to discredit the prime minister and the government, he said.

 UDD core member and opposition Puea Thai MP Jatuporn Promphn said the red-shirt group had nothing to do with this audio clip.

He said the red-shirts would not stoop to such levels but would fight straightforwardly.

As long as it had not been clearly proven whether the clip had been edited or not, the red-shirts would not use it as a political issue to attack the government during their anti-government rally on Sunday, he said.

He had listened to the audio clip, and he felt unhappy with it.

He said he could not imagine who would have the courage to do this sort of thing. However, he said the prime minister should prove himself to the public.

“I hope the voice clip really was altered. If not, Mr Abhisit will not be able to hold on to his position,” said Mr Jatuporn.

Bangkok Post

 

PM knows sources of voice clip

Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva said on Thursday he knew that those who emailed the audio clip that sounded like his voice ordering officials to use force against the red-shirt protesters during the Songkran riots in April were connected to politicians and companies with links to a former prime minister.

Mr Abhisit said listened to the clip on Wednesday night and it was clear to him that it had been edited.  He said he was ready to prove this fact to the public.

It was the work of those who had an ill intention to instigate unrest and cause misunderstanding, he said.

The prime minister insisted that his policy in dealing with public gatherings is based on the law and the principle of rights and freedom of the people.

“I can’t hardly believe that there were people who had resorted to dirty means to create disorder and violence in the country.  I will take legal action against whoever is involved,” Mr Abhisit said.

Mr Abhisit said he had obtained a clue that those who did this were in some way connected to politicians and companies with links to a former prime minister.  He, however, did not say outright that the former prime minister was Thaksin Shinawatra.

Asked whether those involved would be arrested, the prime minister said it would be good if this could be done because this should not happen to anyone.

Mr Abhisit discussed this matter with police cheif Patcharawat Wongsuwan at parliament.

Pol Gen Patcharawat said the prime minister had assigned him to investigate this matter.  He said he would have to listen to the clip and believed it would take some time before facts could be established.

Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban, who is in charge of security affairs, said the clip was clearly edited.  Asked what if the opposition asked that the clip be played in parliament, Suthep said it was House Speaker Chai Chidchob who would make a decision.

Deputy Interior Minister Thavorn Senniam said he was with the prime minister during the Songkran riots all the time but never heard him give such an order.

Chuan Leekpai, the Democrat Party advisory chairman, said he could guarantee that Mr Abhisit had not ordered use of force as alleged.  It was the work of some people who wanted to create a condition to discredit the prime minister and the government, he said.

Bangkok Post, 27/08/2009 at 01:57 PM

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