On February 13th, 2024, Pol. Col. Thawee Sodsong, the Thai Minister of Justice, confirmed the official pardon of former Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra under the law and regulations of the Thai Department of Corrections.
The Pardon Committee approved the list of individuals eligible for pardon, as proposed by the Director-General of the Department of Corrections. This decision was made as Thaksin met the criteria of being seriously ill, disabled, or over the age of 70, stated the Minister of Justice.
The list comprised a total of 945 individuals, with the Committee approving 930 names, according to the Minister of Justice.
The Thai Minister of Justice remarked that this process was routine and the pardon regulations have been ongoing since 2003, with a current total of 2,240 individuals pardoned. The Minister said there were no special considerations for Thaksin and he was not treated with any favoritism or given any exceptions.
After the Thai cabinet meeting today (February 13th), Mr. Srettha Thavisin addressed concerns over potential opposition to the pardon. Srettha highlighted Thaksin’s significant contributions to the nation during his tenure as Thai Prime Minister and underscored that his return to civilian status marked a closure to past controversies.
In response to queries regarding the exact date of Thaksin’s release, Srettha stated that he did not receive specific information and the process would follow legal procedures as outlined by the Royal Pardon, Department of Corrections.
Regarding future engagement with Thaksin for counsel, Srettha expressed openness to dialogue with individuals, regardless of political affiliation, who have contributed to the nation’s welfare.
Srettha emphasized the importance of leveraging diverse expertise in governance for the benefit of the country.