Army General Who Led Coup D'état in Thailand Named Prime Minister

Thailand’s junta leader Prayuth Chan-ocha, an army general who led the overthrow of the southeast Asian nation’s elected government in May, has been named the new prime minister.

The BBC described the vote in a Parliament comprised mostly of military and police figures as “little more than a formality…the kind of rushed acclamation favored by dictatorships and communist parties of old.”

Since the May 22 coup that ousted Yingluck Shinawatra’s civilian government, Prayuth’s military has cracked down on dissent by imposing martial law, detaining protesters, handpicking members of the legislature, and suspending all forms of popular elections.

The New York Times reports:

According to Time:

In response to Prayuth’s election, Human Rights Watch Asia director Brad Adam said: “As both prime minister and junta leader, Gen. Prayuth can wield broad power without accountability. This marks a dark day for human rights and the future of democracy in Thailand.”