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Thai king may hand over power to military government — source

May 25, 2014, 18:04 UTC+3

The relevant order is expected to be issued May 26

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BANGKOK, May 25. /ITAR-TASS/. The military in Thailand will be ruling the country by assent of the king. The relevant order of Bhumibol Adulyadej is expected to be issued by the royal household on May 26, according to the country’s army staff.

On Monday morning, a special ceremony is planned in connection with the order, by which the monarch will officially appoint General Prayuth Chan-ocha chairperson of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO), created as a result of the coup. After the ceremony, Prayuth Chan-Ocha will address the nation with a keynote speech, in which he will make public the nearest steps of the military government. It is expected that they will include the drafting of an interim Constitution and the National Legislative Council.

NCPO has been set up May 22 by the military leadership as a result of the coup. General Prayuth Chan-Ocha by his own order became the leader of this structure, which assumed all executive and legislative power in the country. However, observers believe, the appointment of Chan-Ocha by the monarch will give him more significance in the eyes of the Thai nation. The kingdom’s residents are famous for their reverent attitude towards the 86-year-old Bhumibol Adulyadej, whose ruling became the longest in the country’s history.

In the recent three years, a wave of anti-military protests embraced Thailand despite the ban on mass rallies issued by the NCPO. The rally in Bangkok on May 25 gathered up to 1,000 people, who were protesting against the state coup. Local media report about insignificant clashes of protesters with the military.

Amid the tidal wave, which increases after the arrests of almost all key politicians backing the previous government, the NCPO has issued an order on creating a military court. Now it will review all the cases linked to violations of martial law in the country, as well as to the lese-majesty, which in Thailand is considered a grave crime.

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