New Thai constitution draft fails to pass in vote by National Reform Council

Bangkok, Sep 06 (ANI): Thailand's military-appointed reform council rejected a new constitution in a vote on Sunday, a result that pushes back the junta's timeframe for an election to April 2017 at the earliest while a new charter is written. The constitution, which would have been Thailand's 20th in 83 years of at times turbulent democracy, was rejected by 135 members of the National Reform Council (NRC) and approved by just 105. There were seven abstentions. The shooting down of the charter drafted by a military-appointed panel will be cheered by political parties who derided it as an affront on democracy. The biggest bone of contention was a late addition to the draft, the creation of a National Committee on Reform and Reconciliation Strategy. The NRC's rejection effectively prolongs the military's rule to 2017 because it means the whole process needs to start from scratch. s

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