Doha: February 6, 2007 – Al Jazeera English today aired a high level interview with the former Prime Minister of Thailand, Thaksin Shinawatra.

News presenter Veronica Pedrosa interviewed the former Prime Minister of Thailand in Dubai last week for the channel’s ‘Talk to Al Jazeera’ programme which will air at 13.30 GMT & 20.30 GMT.

The interview ranged from Thaksin’s corruption allegations, to his views on democracy and the future of Thailand:

ON CORRUPTION ALLEGATIONS:

"Finally, there might be alleged baseless evidence and some even try to bend the law just to justify the coup, the reason for the coup. But finally if it goes to the justice system, to the courts, I don't think there will be anyone guilty.

"We have done a lot to protect it, but corruption has become an excuse for every coup. And some juntas in the past turn out to be more corrupt that the regimes they topple down."

ON DEMOCRACY:

"The power must lie in the hands of people. The people have to decide their own destiny, but there are some groups of people try to decide the destiny of the whole population themselves. They're trying to represent the whole population, which they're not.

"No one can take away their democracy for long. They have to return democracy back to the people. And the Thai people are very patient, but their tolerance period is not that long.

"So when they said that they will return the power to the people in one year they've got to do it. If they are not doing it I don't think the people will allow them to hold the power."

"They have to return power to the people. They cannot hold power forever. This is the first time that they staged a coup against a popular government, so if you staged a coup against a popular government you don't have to waste the time to justify the coup.

"But you should take the time to reconciliate the differences of the people of two sides. Clapping hands you need two hands you cannot do it with one. I can help, I will help, because I want to see Thailand moving forward."

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Source: Al Jazeera