The United States government called for peaceful dialogue between the 'Red Shirts' street protesters loyal to former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra and Thai authorities led by sitting Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva The US State Secretary's message:
As long-time friends of Thailand, President Obama and I, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, are deeply saddened by the recent violence and loss of life in Bangkok. As you prepare to celebrate the upcoming Songkran holiday, the United States renews our call for both the opposition and the government to return to the negotiating table and to seek agreement on a way forward that strengthens your democracy and the rule of law. The challenges you are facing cannot be resolved by force, but only by dialogue. We believe firmly that a negotiated solution is possible. We are hopeful that this New Year will be a time of renewal and reconciliation, and an opportunity to gather with family, friends, and neighbors to honor Thailand’s rich traditions and culture. While you continue on the path to resolve your political differences, we remain confident in the strong, enduring bonds between the United States and Thailand. I wish you and Thais around the world a safe and peaceful New Year.
Meanwhile the 'Red Shirt' protesters rejected Tuesday Prime Minister Abhisit's latest offer to dissolve the House in six months. The proposal came after reaching an agreement between leaders and supporters of the coalition parties Sunday. ."All we want is for Mr Abhisit to dissolve the House and call new general elections urgently," Mr Jatuporn, a Puea Thai Party MP, said. Bangkokpost.com reports:
Mr Abhisit and UDD leaders held two rounds of talks last month but were unable to reach any agreements as supporters of convicted former premier Thaksin Shinawatra had rejected the government's first offer of a dissolution in nine months. Mr Abhisit said yesterday in a televised address the dissolution option was still available for discussion with the red shirts and his proposal in March had been revised to find a political solution.
There has been a noticeable lull on the side of the 'Red Shirt' protesters as the country prepares for the Songkran holiday which is marked by festive celebrations in the country.
(original article appeared @ Digital Journal )