Japan said today it had granted an entry visa to exiled former Thai leader Thaksin Shinawatra, who was ousted in a 2006 coup, 10 days after parliament selected his sister as the country’s first female prime minister.
Thaksin was granted a visa by Japan at the request of the Thai government, Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano told reporters today. Edano didn’t say when Thaksin would enter the country.
Thaksin is interested “in visiting and meeting with victims of the disaster in northern Japan and promoting goodwill between our two countries,” Edano said.
During the election campaign, Yingluck Shinawatra deflected questions on whether her Pheu Thai party, which won a majority in the July 3 vote, would promote amnesty for Thaksin who has been living in Dubai since fleeing a 2008 jail term for abuse of power. To engineer the return of her brother, she will have to overcome opposition from Thailand’s military, courts and bureaucracy.