Interview: Struggle for democracy in Thailand divides generations

September 8, 2023

A generational rift has split the movement for democracy in Thailand, according to Kanyanatt Kalfagiannis, an activist with the Australian Alliance for Thai Democracy.

The Pheu Thai party broke its alliance with the Move Forward Party (which won the biggest number of seats in the May 14 election) and joined with conservative pro-military coup parties to form government more than three months later, on August 22.

In doing so, it has broken its election promise not to ally with the military-backed parties.

Soon after Pheu Thai's longstanding de facto leader, former PM Thaksin Shinawatra, returned from 15 years in political exile.

On September 1, Thaksin was given a royal pardon for his controversial abuse of power and conflicts of interest conviction and had his sentence commuted from eight years to one year.