Political interaction between Russia and Thailand embraces wide agenda in bilateral as well as multilateral formats including that on highest and high levels.
An important milestone in the development of the Russian-Thai political dialogue was the first ever visit to Thailand of the head of the Russian state – the State Visit of H.E. Mr. Vladimir Putin, President of the Russian Federation in October 2003, back to back with his participation in the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum (APEC) Leaders Week in Bangkok.
In July 2007 H.M. Queen Sirikit of Thailand paid the return State Visit to Russia as the Representative of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej. Her Majesty’s visit was also marked by the festivities on the occasion of the 110th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Russia and Siam (Thailand).
Other members of the Thai Royal Family are also frequent guests of our country: H.R.H. Princess Galayani Wattana, the late sister of the King of Thailand (in 1975 and 1989), H.R.H. Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn (in 1989, 2007 and 2008), H.R.H. Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn (in 1993 and 2017), H.R.H. Princess Chulabhorn Mahidol (in 2011 and 2012).
Prime Minister of Thailand H.E. Mr. Thaksin Shinavatra visited Russia in 2002 and 2006. His sister, Prime Minister of Thailand H.E. Mrs. Yingluck Shinavatra met H.E. Mr. Vladimir Putin, President of the Russian Federation on the sidelines of APEC Leaders Week in Vladivostok (Russia) on September 8, 2012.
On November 12, 2014 the meeting between H.E. Mr. Dmitry Medvedev, Chairman of the Government of the Russian Federation and H.E. Gen. Prayuth Chan-o-cha was held on the sidelines of the East Asian Summit in Naypyidaw (Myanmar). On April 7-8, 2015, H.E. Mr. Dmitry Medvedev paid an official visit to Thailand. On November 18, 2015 the two heads of governments met in Manila on the sidelines of the APEC Summit.
In May 2016 H.E. Gen. Prayuth Chan-o-cha paid an official visit to Russia where he had meetings with H.E. Mr. Vladimir Putin, President of the Russian Federation and H.E. Mr. Dmitry Medvedev. On September 5, 2017 H.E. Gen. Prayuth Chan-o-cha had a meeting with H.E. Mr. Vladimir Putin on the sidelines of BRICS Summit in Xiamen, China. On November 14, 2018 H.E. Mr. Vladimir Putin had talks with H.E. Gen. Prayuth Chan-o-cha on the sidelines of the ASEAN-Russia Summit in Singapore.
Since 1987 we have been witnessing regular contacts and exchange of visits by foreign ministers of the two countries. To commemorate the Centennial Jubilee of the establishment of the diplomatic relations H.E. Mr. Evgeny Primakov, the then Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, paid an official visit to Thailand in 1997. H.E. Mr. Igor Ivanov in his capacity of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Russia visited Thailand twice in 2000 to attend ASEAM meetings and in 2003 to take part in APEC meetings. In 2002 H.E. Dr. Surakiart Sathirathai, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Thailand paid a visit to Russia. In 2004, 2009 and in August 2017 H.E. Mr. Sergey Lavrov, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation visited Bangkok.
In 2013 Thai Foreign Minister visited Russia and had a talk with H.E. Mr. Sergey Lavrov on the sidelines of the APEC Ministerial Meeting in Indonesia. In July 2015 H.E. Gen. Tanasak Patimapragorn, Deputy Prime-minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs visited Russia and had bilateral talks with H.E. Mr. Sergey Lavrov. On September 30, 2016 a telephone conversation between H.E. Mr. Sergey Lavrov and H.E. Mr. Don Pramudwinai, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Thailand was held.
The mechanism of regular consultations between ministries of foreign affairs of both countries has been in place since 1993. The meetings are being held alternately in Russia and Thailand.
Both countries have dynamic interparliamentary contacts. President of the Senate of Thailand visited Russia in 2009 and 2013. The Heads of the upper chambers of both parliaments also met twice on the sidelines of the Asia Pacific Interparliamentary Forum in 2010 and 2013. The friendship groups of the Thai National Assembly traveled to Russia in 2012, 2013 and 2017.
The countries have established regular dialogue between judicial authorities. On April 22-28, 2015 H.E. Mr. Direk Ingkaninanda, President of the Supreme Court of the Kingdom of Thailand visited Russia. On July 2-4, 2015 H.E. Mr. Vyacheslav Lebedev, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation paid a reciprocal visit to Thailand. On October 3-6, 2016 H.E. Mr. Veerapol Tungsuwan, President of the Supreme Court of the Kingdom of Thailand took part in the 8th International Legal Forum of the Asia-Pacific region and held a meeting with H.E. Mr. Vyacheslav Lebedev. On June 24-29, 2017 during the official visit to Russia Mr. Veerapol Tungsuwan met with Mr. Vyacheslav Lebedev and Chief Justices of Moscow’s and St. Petersburg’s courts. In 2018 H.E. Hon. Chief Justice Cheep Jullamon, President of the Supreme Court of Thailand visited Russia twice – on July 2-6 with working visit (Moscow and St. Petersburg) and on September 24-26 to attend the 10th International Legal Forum of the Asia-Pacific region in Vladivostok.
Cooperation between defence ministries is strengthening. On February 23-25, 2016 H.E. General Prawit Wongsuwon, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Defence of Thailand and H.E. Mr. Somkid Jatusripitak, Deputy Prime Minister of Thailand paid a working visit to Moscow. On April 25-27, 2016 H.E. General Prawit Wongsuwon visited Russia to take part in the 5th Moscow Conference on International Security and the First Informal Meeting of Defence Ministers of Russia and ASEAN Member-States.
The Joint Russian-Thai Commission on Bilateral Cooperation (JC) is also an important mechanism of bilateral interaction in various areas. In July 2015 its six session was held in Moscow. The seventh meeting of the Commission will be held on December 27, 2018 in Bangkok.
Interaction of Russia and Thailand in multilateral diplomacy is based on the two countries’ close or similar approaches to settlement of global and regional problems in the agenda of the United Nations as well as other international organizations and fora. Thailand co-sponsored or supported a number of Russian draft UN GA resolutions. We also witness the mutual support to each other’s candidatures during elections to UN bodies.
Russian cooperation with Thailand is aimed at facilitating further modernization of the Eastern Siberia and Far Eastern regions of Russia and their integration into the Asia-Pacific Region.
Major importance is attached to the Russian-Thai interaction within the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC).
Another important mechanism is the Dialogue Partnership between Russia and Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), which is guided by the decisions of the Third Russia-ASEAN Summit held in November 2018 in Singapore.
Both countries also effectively cooperate in the East Asian Summits (EAS), Asia-Europe Meetings (ASEM), Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA), ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD), ASEAN Defence Ministers Meetings with Dialogue Partners (ADMM Plus), Shangri-La Dialogue.
Russia and Thailand also interact in such formats as Asian Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (ASOSAI), Heads of National Drug Law Enforcement Agencies Meeting, Asia and the Pacific (HONLEA, Asia), Organization of Asia-Pacific News Agencies (OANA) and others.
Both countries are observers to the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).