March 28, 2014, 8:59 a.m.
Early elections held on February 2, 2014 in Thailand have been invalidated by the country’s Constitutional Court. Elections were not due until 2015; however, a series of protests by the opposition saw Prime Minister YINGLUCK Shinawatra ask the King to dissolve Parliament in December, allowing for elections in 2014. The opposition, led by the Democrat Party, boycotted the election while calling for the Election Commission to postpone the election. The elections on February 2 proceeded, despite 28 election districts in southern Thailand not having any names on the ballot, as candidates had been prevented from registering. This coupled with disruptions of voting in Bangkok led to re-run elections held in several stages beginning on March, 2. On March 21, 2014, the Constitutional Court annulled the results of the general election, saying that due to the delays and disruptions in voting, the election was not able to take place in one day as required by the Constitution. In a 6-to-3 verdict, the Constitutional Court said that the results could not stand and that new elections should be held. It is unknown when the new elections will be scheduled, or whether the Democrat Party plans to participate.