Published: Thu, August 10, 2017
Medicine | By Earnest Bishop

Prayut dismisses further Thai action against North Korea

Prayut dismisses further Thai action against North Korea

Secretary Tillerson visiting Thailand and Malaysia, hoping to round up allies in USA efforts to halt North Korea's nuclear ambitions.

Besides issues related to North Korea which have been high on the agenda of the USA secretary of state's visit to Bangkok, he and Tillerson also discussed issues on bilateral trade, anti-terrorism and cyber security cooperation.

The main objective of Tillerson's trip has been to galvanize diplomatic and political forces against North Korea. He was in Thailand prior to his visit to Malaysia.

A narrowing trade gap would also reduce the risk of Thailand being labelled by Washington as a currency manipulator - the last thing Thailand wants as it struggles with a baht currency that exporters find uncomfortably strong.

Mr Don told reporters that he informed Mr Tillerson that trade value fell 94% during the first half of this year compared with the same period of last year, in accordance with UN Security Council resolutions.

"We want Thailand to emerge as a strengthened democracy that respects and guarantees human rights and fundamental freedoms at home and plays a leading role in advancing regional security and prosperity", a USA embassy spokesman said.

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After meeting Prayut, Tillerson left for Kuala Lumpur to continue his visit. General Prayut is due to visit Washington at the invitation of US President Donald Trump, though no specific date has been set.

"Coming to Bangkok is a way for Tillerson to show the Prayut regime that the USA is back in the game". I think, as you can see, Thailand being more accommodating, the Trump administration will probably be more compromising. Thailand also increased military exchanges with China, and approved the 36 billion baht (S$) purchase of three Chinese submarines in July.

The No. 2 USA diplomat on Tuesday sought to allay concerns among the State Department's rank-and-file employees over possible layoffs and perceptions of a lack of firm direction under the administration of President Donald Trump.

In February, Washington sent Admiral Harry Harris, head of the US Pacific Command, to open the annual multilateral Cobra Gold military exercise in Thailand. -Thai relationship hit rock bottom with the Obama administration following the 2014 coup, but that the Trump administration is engaged in a regional realignment focused on its North Korea policy.

During his five-hour visit to Bangkok, Tillerson signed a condolence book for the revered late King Bhumibol Adulyadej, whose death after seven decades on the throne was felt deeply in Thailand.

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