Supreme Commander Thanasak Patimaprakorn and army leaders will discuss the recording of an alleged conversation between Deputy Defence Minister Yutthasak Sasiprapa and ousted premier Thaksin Shinawatra.
In the audio clip, which was posted online last week, two people discuss a plot to seek support from the military, the Defence Council and the National Security Council, to allow the government to issue an executive decree to grant an amnesty to bring Thaksin home without being punished for his corruption conviction.
The conversation is said to be between Gen Yutthasak and Thaksin, when they met in Hong Kong on June 22, eight days before Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra's cabinet reshuffle.
They also touch on the possibility of amending the Defence Ministry's regulations governing military reshuffles and the government's control of the armed forces.
The names of all armed forces commanders were mentioned in the clip.
Air force chief Prajin Jantong did not reply directly when asked yesterday if the armed forces still had faith in Gen Yutthasak.
He said the armed forces chiefs would adhere to their duties to protect the interests of the country when they announce their stance on the matter.
He added the statement will reaffirm their intentions of safeguarding the nation, religion and the monarchy.
Asked whether it would be acceptable if Thaksin returned to the country and washed his hands of politics, ACM Prajin said the armed services would adhere to two principles in their judgement of any such event: people in the country must be united, and the rule of law must be maintained.
ACM Prajin said the top brass would meet to discuss the possibility of issuing an amnesty executive decree.
"After that we will announce our stance," he said, but did not say when their meeting would take place.
ACM Prajin refused to comment when asked if Gen Yutthasak should step down to take responsibility for the clip.
He said he could not yet be sure that the clip was real. "I hope it's not," he added.
Gen Yutthasak has denied it is his voice in the recording.
ACM Prajin said he still had confidence in Gen Thanasak, the supreme commander, and army chief Prayuth Chan-ocha, although the alleged conversation made it seem as though they already knew of the plot to bring Thaksin home.
Gen Thanasak and Gen Prayuth would be the best people to ask about that, ACM Prajin said.
Asked whether he thought the matter of the audio clip could lead to a coup, ACM Prajin said: "This should not happen. Nobody wants it to happen."
Thaksin has been living overseas in self-exile since a 2008 corruption conviction. He would have to serve a two-year jail sentence if he returned.
Meanwhile, PM Yingluck yesterday said any amnesty decree would prioritise justice and the public interest.
She added she had talked to Gen Yuthasak and he did not mention any intention to resign as deputy defence minister.
A Pheu Thai source said a group of key party figures believed the clip was real and had not been edited.
However, Pheu Thai spokesman Prompong Nopparit said opponents had doctored the clip for political gains.
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Writer: Wassana Nanuam, Patsara Jikkham & Aekarach Sattaburuth