Elected head of Thai government by Feb 2008: Post-coup PM

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Bangkok, Nov 14 (UNI) Thailand will have an elected head of government by February next year, interim Prime Minister Surayud Chulanont said today.

Addressing the First East Asia Regional Conference of the World Federation of Consuls, Mr Surayud, appointed after the September 2006 military coup, said,''In view of the challenges facing the Thai people since September 2006, the past year has not been an easy one.

With its limited timeframe, this Government has focused its agenda on political reform in order to strengthen Thailand's democratic governance and create confidence both at the national and international levels.'' ''I am happy to say that, thus far, we have achieved what we set out in our timeline to return the country to full parliamentary democracy,'' he added.

Mr Surayud said that with national parliament elections announced for December 23, he was confident that ''our original timeline will also apply to the appointment of a new Prime Minister by February 2008''.

Thanking the international diplomatic community for promoting better understanding of the political situation in Thailand around the world, the Thai prime minister assured them that his government and national election commission were working hard to ensure a free and fair general election.

UNI

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