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Bangkok ready to host Asean meetings : Govt spokesman

Thailand's ongoing political crisis will have no effects on its hosting of Asean ministerial and summit meetings, Government spokesman Wichienchote Sukchoterat said Tuesday.

The meetings will surely be held as scheduled, the spokesman said, adding Thailand is ready to host the meetings.

"Don't worry about who will be the prime minister or foreign minister of Thailand. No matter who takes the office, Thailand is ready to host the Asean meeting," he said.

 "Our political problems are our own internal affairs and have nothing to do with Asean," he said.

Wichienchote was responding to criticism by Cambodia's Prime Minister Hun Sen who said on Monday that Bangkok's political crisis raised questions about whether it will be able to host an upcoming Asean summit.

Hun Sen said the grouping should ponder asking another country to chair the December meeting in place of Thailand.

"I am wondering whether we can have the summit there since there is no government in Thailand yet,'' Hun Sen told reporters.  "Where else in the world has a government building been occupied by protesters like this? Only in Thailand. It is quite weird."

Hun Sen said the situation in Thailand was affecting "not only the Thai image exclusively, but Asean's image as well.''

"If Asean cannot meet in Thailand, should (the chairmanship) be returned to Singapore or passed on to Vietnam? What is to be done?'' he asked.


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