03 Feb '11, 7am

Thailand invites Obama to patch up

Thailand invites Obama to patch up

Panitan Wattanayagorn, Thailand's acting government spokesman and special envoy of the prime minister to Washington, speaks during an interview. -- PHOTO: AFP WASHINGTON - AS THE United States steps up its focus on Southeast Asia, its oldest regional ally Thailand is inviting President Barack Obama to visit as it tries to shed images of last year's political violence. Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva sent a special envoy to Washington this week to convince US policymakers that the kingdom is returning to stability and is committed to shift its fractious politics from the street to the ballot box. 'Our mission is to tell them that we're back in business,' envoy Panitan Wattanayagorn, who also serves as the Thai government's acting spokesman, told AFP on Wednesday. The Obama administration has worked to build ties with Southeast Asia, sensing that the dynamic and mostly US-f...

Full article: http://www.straitstimes.com/BreakingNews/SEAsia/Story/STI...

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