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May 1, 2017

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Thailand gov't denies 'killing' TV interview with anti-dam movement leader

BANGKOK--Thai government spokesperson Teerat Ratanasevi Saturday denied that the Yingluck Shinawatra administration was responsible for pulling the plug on a television interview with a leader of the anti-Mae Wong Dam movement.

The program Kon Khon Kon ("People Search People") on television Channel 9 was scheduled to broadcast a taped interview with environmentalist Sasin Chalermlarp, who is also the secretary-general of the Sueb Nakhasathien Foundation.

The program was scheduled to be aired at 8 p.m. yesterday, but was replaced by a different episode leading to widespread speculation on social media sites.

However, a source at "Kon Khon Kon" program revealed later yesterday that they would upload the 60-minute episode on YouTube at 8 p.m. yesterday in order to let society see what the content was really about. The normal airtime of the episode on TV was 40 minutes.

Teerat posted on his Twitter account that the decision not to air the episode was solely that of the television station because it was seen as providing one-sided information.

Teerat added that the producer was asked to make the episode more balanced, and the matter had nothing to do with the Yingluck administration. He said the government was not even aware that Sasin would be featured in the program this week.

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