Former Thai prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra on Friday announced that he is not interested in the junta-led reconciliation process, three days after the junta handed him a half-a-billion-dollar tax bill for his past business deal.
"As for the reconciliation that is bound to happen soon, please cut me out of the equation," announced the former premier, who is in self-imposed exile ever since a 2006 military coup.
Since February, the ruling Thai military government has been inviting representatives from various political parties for reconciliation talks, as the country remains in a political deadlock that has resulted in two coups in just over a decade.
Politicians and junta critics have voiced scepticism about the junta-led effort, saying the military is also part of the problem, not just political parties.
Thaksin's comments were seen as a rare move as he had remained silent on politics for the past year, with the last political statement being made on his Facebook page in April 2016.
"I intended to take a break from making political comments, not because I fear the junta, but because I want the junta to prioritize the economy and our people's plight," Thaksin wrote.
"However, the junta has been blaming me for everything that goes wrong in the country, when the problem is in fact their mismanagement," Thaksin said, adding that he had nothing to do with recent bombings in Bangkok and southern Thailand.
"And the latest case - Shin Corp tax - if I was guilty, the past two to three governments would have already brought me to justice," said Thaksin, referring to the junta's tax summons put up on the front door of Thaksin's house in Bangkok on Tuesday.
The revenue department issued a tax summons worth 17.6 billion baht (511 million dollars) for the sale of Thaksin's telecommunications firm Shin Corp to Singapore's Temasek Holdings in a 1.8-billion-dollar deal 11 years ago.
The sale sparked a controversy in Thailand and triggered mass street demonstrations against his administration.
Thaksin's legal advisor Noppadon Pattama on Tuesday vowed to appeal the tax order and sue revenue officials for misconduct.
Thailand has remained under military rule since a May 2014 coup. The junta promised general elections in the second half of 2018 after several postponements.