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Thai caretaker PM refuses to step down

Updated: 2013-12-17 17:35
( Xinhua)

BANGKOK - Thai caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra on Tuesday reiterated that she would not resign as anti-government protesters requested.

Under the constitution, she will stay on until a new prime minister is elected, Yingluck insisted. The coming general election is scheduled for February 2, 2014.

Yingluck also called on Thai voters to cast their ballots on the election day.

The caretaker cabinet has approved a budget of 3.8 billion baht ($118.6 million) for the election, according to deputy government spokesman Chalitrat Chandarubeksa.

Representatives of the anti-government People's Democratic Reform Committee on Tuesday urged the Election Commission to postpone the general election.

Abhisit Vejjajiva on Tuesday was re-elected leader of the opposition Democrat Party at the party's general assembly.

The assembly is also expected to elect a new executive committee, which will decide whether the party will contest the general election.  

Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra announced the dissolution of the House of Representatives on December 9 to defuse the country's prolonged political tension.

However, anti-government protest leader Suthep Thaugsuban refused to call off the street demonstration unless Yingluck resigned as caretaker prime minister.

Protesters have demanded the caretaker government be replaced by an unelected "people's council" in a bid to uproot the so- called Thaktsin regime.

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