US never pressed for quick election: Thai PM

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Bangkok, Feb 18 (IANS) Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha on Thursday said US President Barack Obama had not pressed him to speed up a general election in Thailand.

Upon his return from a recent Asean-US summit in California, the Thai leader dismissed allegations that the US leader had apparently mounted pressure upon him for a quick election following the 2014 coup which he himself had orchestrated to overthrow an elected government under ex-premier Yingluck Shinawatra, Xinhua reported.

On the contrary, Prayut said Obama had given him moral support and understood about Thai’s current political situation in which the sought-after nationwide election will not be held until after a draft constitution has passed a public referendum and organic laws have been enacted.

The Thai military-led government has designed and revised a “roadmap” to return democratic rule via the general election by the latter part of next year though the public referendum on the draft charter is tentatively scheduled for upcoming July.

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