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Thai king's sister running for PM in March polls

8 February 2019 - 44   - 0

BANGKOK (Reuters) - The sister of Thailand’s king entered the race to become prime minister on Friday as the candidate of a populist party, an unprecedented foray into politics by a royal that instantly upended the first election since a 2014 military coup.

Princess Ubolratana Rajakanya Sirivadhana Barnavadi, 67, the elder sister of King Maha Vajiralongkorn, was nominated by a party loyal to ousted premier Thaksin Shinawatra, the figure at the centre political turbulence and rival street protests that have riven Thai society for years.

One of her chief opponents in the March 24 election will be Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, the leader of the ruling military junta, who also announced his candidacy on Friday.

Thailand has been a constitutional monarchy since 1932 but the royal family has wielded great influence and commands the devotion of millions.

 

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