Thailand summons US diplomat over critical martial law comments
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Thailand summons US diplomat over critical martial law comments

BANGKOK (AP) — Thailand’s military government has summoned the U.S. charge d’affaires after a top U.S. diplomat called for an end to martial law and said the impeachment of a former prime minister could be politically motivated.

The meeting Wednesday came after a visit to Thailand by the U.S. assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific affairs, Daniel Russel.

(MORE: Prayuth blasts US envoy’s remarks, calls himself ‘democratic soldier’)

Thai Deputy Foreign Minister Don Pramudwinai said Russel’s comments had “hurt” many Thais and showed a lack of understanding of Thai politics.

Thailand is a long-standing U.S. ally. In a speech to students at a Bangkok university on Monday, Russel also expressed concerns about restraints on freedom of expression.

The Southeast Asian country has been under martial law since the military staged a coup last May.