"I'm Calling It Quits"

JUN TAKAGI FOR TIME

OPEN UP: Thailand needs a freer market, says Thaksin

Since he was toppled from power last September, Thaksin Shinawatra has been crisscrossing the globe. TIME's Southeast Asia Bureau Chief Hannah Beech caught up with Thailand's former Prime Minister on Jan. 25 in Tokyo, where they spoke about the military coup against him, the new regime in Bangkok, and what he intends to do with his life. Excerpts:

TIME: You've asserted that you and your old political party, Thai Rak Thai, were highly popular. Yet there was hardly any public outcry against the coup.
THAKSIN: It was the same with Thailand's 17 other coups. First, the people...

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