“Thaksin Shinawatra Returns to Thailand Amidst Political Shift”
In a dramatic turn of events, Thaksin Shinawatra, the controversial figure who had been in exile for 15 years, arrived in Thailand just hours before parliament’s crucial vote for his party’s candidate as the new prime minister.
At 9 am local time, Thaksin landed at Bangkok’s Don Mueang airport, greeted by enthusiastic “Red Shirt” supporters who gathered with signs and songs. The billionaire former owner of Manchester City, known for his polarizing political role, paid respects to King Maha Vajiralongkorn’s portrait and waved to his cheering followers.
As he was transported to the Supreme Court, where he faced an eight-year sentence related to three prior convictions, the streets filled with more Red Shirt supporters.
Thaksin’s return aligns with the day the Pheu Thai party, a continuation of his political movement, is expected to assume power and see business tycoon Srettha Thavisin become the prime minister.
Although Thaksin was found guilty in absentia on four counts, including one where the statute of limitations has passed, the duration of his prison term remains uncertain after his reappearance.
Speculation abounds that his return timing and his party’s election victory might have influenced a potential deal for leniency in his legal matters. The evolving political landscape adds intrigue to the unfolding events surrounding Thaksin’s return to Thailand.