Updated: 05/14/2014 03:34 | By Agence France-Presse

US hopeful Thai military will show restraint

The United States voiced confidence Tuesday that Thailand's military will not stage another coup as worries mount in Washington of fresh turmoil in its oldest Asian ally.


US hopeful Thai military will show restraint

Thai anti-government protesters rest outside Government House in Bangkok on May 13, 2014 - by Nicolas Asfouri

Amy Searight, the top Pentagon official devoted to Southeast Asia, said the United States was "reasonably confident" that the Thai armed forces "will continue to be restrained and professional in all of this."

"At this point we don't have any reason to expect that the Thai military will change their current stance," she told a conference at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington.

Searight said that the Thai military appeared to have learned lessons from 2006, when it overthrew tycoon Thaksin Shinawatra as prime minister and the United States briefly imposed sanctions.

Thailand's judiciary last week removed Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra -- Thaksin's sister -- in the latest twist in the deeply polarized nation's eight years of turmoil that has led to crippling street protests and occasional bloodshed.

Scot Marciel, the top State Department official on Southeast Asia, said that Washington was not offering a "US prescription" to resolve the crisis beyond urging a peaceful solution.

"It's important that it be done constitutionally and democratically and, of course, peacefully," Marciel said.

Marciel and Searight both said that US cooperation with Thailand had largely progressed unhindered, with the exception of some work by government ministries closed by street protests.

But both officials declined to predict when Thailand would find a way out of its crisis, which comes as the United States tries to put a greater focus on Asia in the face of China's rise.

Thailand, then known as Siam, in 1833 became the first Asian nation to sign a friendship treaty with the United States. The kingdom famously offered elephants to president Abraham Lincoln to fight the Civil War.

Latest Photo Galleries on xinmsn

NEWS VIDEOS

MORE NEWS VIDEOS

facebook recommendations

LIVE NEWS RADIO STREAMING

  • 938 Live

    938LIVE is Singapore's only English news and talk station which transmits round the clock with an engaging and enticing spread of programmes on current affairs, health, business and lifestyle as well as news every half hour until midnight.

  • Capital 958


    95.8FM城市频道的前身是"第三广播网"。上个世纪30年代末,新加坡就有中文广播,一路走来经过不少政治,社会局势的改变,中文广播在本地一直扮演举足轻重的角色。