Thai Princess' Nomination for Prime Minister Is Struck Down
Thailand saw several eventful days after a princess' name was officially entered -- and then struck down -- as a candidate for prime minister. Princess Ubolratana Mahidol is the older sister of Thailand's king, Maha Vajiralongkorn.
Observers say the move adds to the confusion about the upcoming March 24 election. The country has been under military rule since 2014. Next month's election could return it to rule by an elected leader, even if it is a largely authoritarian government that is friendly to the military.
Can the princess enter politics?
The princess' short candidacy was the first time a member of the royal family had tried to enter a political election. The princess and her relatives have traditionally been expected to rise above the usual political fighting. Official rules also prevent the royal family from participating directly in party politics.
But Ubolratana says she does not have to follow those rules because she gave up her royal name in 1972 to marry an American.
Her candidacy was seen as a challenge to current Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha. He is a retired general who has led the country under military rule since 2014, when his group seized power. He said he was competing in the upcoming election to keep law and order.
But the princess' candidacy was quickly struck down. Her brother, the king, called it inappropriate and unconstitutional. Then the Election Commission disqualified her, saying members of the royal family must remain politically neutral.
The party that nominated the princess said in a statement that it accepted the king's order. The party, called Thai Raksa Chart, is led by former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra. He and his group have been in a years-long conflict with the royal family and people who support the monarchy. Thaksin was ousted in a 2006 coup after being accused of abuse of power and disrespect for the monarchy.
George McLeod is a political risk expert based in Thailand. He said that by putting forward the princess as a prime minister, Thaksin took a chance and lost.
But a professor for Southeast Asian Studies at Kyoto University had another idea. Pavin Chachavalpongpun said Thaksin may have achieved exactly what he wanted: forcing the Thai monarchy to engage publicly with politics, and showing conflict within the royal family.
I'm Kelly Jean Kelly.
1.strike down 杀死；击倒
The committee reached an agreement to strike down a law requirement.
2.politically neutral 政治中立
Many newspapers claim to be politically neutral, but few actually are.
3.the royal family 王室
The media has brought more unwelcome attention to the Royal Family.
4.prime minister 总理；首相
He was given a letter purportedly signed by the Prime Minister.
5.He said that by putting forward the princess as a prime minister, Thaksin took a chance and lost.
put forward 提出；拿出；推举
The students have put forward a series of questions.
The President is to put forward new proposals for resolving the country's constitutional crisis.
6.He said that by putting forward the princess as a prime minister, Thaksin took a chance and lost.
took a chance 冒险；把握机会
You rolled the dice and lost, but at least you took a chance!
He said you will be away from the center for a few days, so I took a chance.
在公主（乌汶叻）正式获得竞选总理资格又被取消后，泰国历经了多事之秋 。乌汶叻公主是泰国现任国王哇集拉隆功的姐姐 。
观察人士称 。此举让将于3月24日举行的大选更加扑朔迷离 。自2014年以来，泰国一直被军队统治 。下月的选举可能会让泰国重返民选领导人的统治之下，即便它很大程度上是一个对军方友好的专制政府 。
乌汶叻公主短暂的参选资格是泰国王室成员首次尝试涉足政治 。传统上，人们认为公主及其他王室成员超越世俗政治纷争 。官方规定也禁止王室成员直接参与政党政治 。
她的参选被视为对现任总理巴育的挑战 。巴育是一位退役将军，其自2014年起一直领导着泰国，当时他的团队接管了政权 。巴育表示，为了维护法律和秩序会参加即将举行的大选 。
但是乌汶叻公主的参选资格很快被取消 。她的哥哥、泰国国王称，此举极为不妥且违背宪法 。随后泰国选举委员会取消了公主的参选资格，称王室成员必须保持政治中立 。
推举乌汶叻公主的政党（泰护国党）发声明称接受国王的御令 。泰护国党由前总理他信领导 。他信及其团队与王室以及保王派发生了长达数年的冲突 。他信在2006年的政变中被赶下台，他被控滥用权力、不尊重王室 。
乔治·麦克劳德George McLeod是驻泰国的政治风险专家 。他说，他信想让乌汶叻公主参选总理，他抓住了机会，不过落败了 。
但是，京都大学专攻东南亚研究的教授对此有不同见解 。帕文（Pavin Chachavalpongpun）表示，他信可能已经实现了目标：迫使泰国王室公开卷入政治，并暴露出王室内部的冲突 。