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A unified Thai kingdom was established in the mid-14th century.
PRAYUT was appointed prime minister in August 2014.Prayut Chan-ocha was appointed interim prime minister in August 2014, three months after he staged the coup that removed the previously elected government of Prime Minister YINGLUCK Chinnawat, also spelled YINGLUCK Shinawatradescription: bicameral Assembly of the Union or Pyidaungsu consists of an upper house - the House of Nationalities or Amyotha Hluttaw, (224 seats; 168 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by absolute majority vote with a second round if needed and 56 appointed by the military; members serve 5-year terms) and a lower house - the House of Representatives or Pyithu Hluttaw, (440 seats; 330 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote and 110 appointed by the military; members serve 5-year terms)elections: last held on 8 November 2015 (next to be held in 2020)election results: Upper House - percent of vote by party - NLD 60.3%, USDP 4.9%, ANP 4.5%, SNLD 1.3%, military 25%, other 4%, ; seats by party - NLD 135, USDP 11, ANP 10, SNLD 3, ZCD 2, TNP 2, independent 2, other 3, military appointees 56; Lower House - percent of vote by party - NLD 58%, USDP 6.8%, ANP 2.7%, SNLD 2.7%, military 25%, other 4.8%; seats by party - NLD 255, USDP 30, ANP 12, SNLD 12, PNO 3, TNP 3, ZCD 2, LNDP 2, independent 1, other 3, canceled due to insurgence 7, military appointees 110description: in transition; following the May 2014 military coup, a National Legislative Assembly or Sapha Nitibanyat Haeng Chat of no more than 220 members replaced the bicameral National Assembly; expanded to 250 members in September 2016; elections for a permanent legislative body are scheduled for November 2018; the 2017 constitution calls for a 250-member military-appointed Senate with 5-year terms and a 500-member elected House of Representatives with 4-year termselections: Senate - last held on 30 March 2014 but invalidated by the coup (in future, members will be appointed); House of Representatives - last held on 2 February 2014 but later declared invalid by the Constitutional Court (next to be held in November 2018)election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - NA; House of Representatives - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - NAhighest court(s): Supreme Court of the Union (consists of the chief justice and 7-11 judges)judge selection and term of office: chief justice and judges nominated by the president, with approval of the Lower House, and appointed by the president; judges normally serve until mandatory retirement at age 70subordinate courts: High Courts of the Region; High Courts of the State; Court of the Self-Administered Division; Court of the Self-Administered Zone; district and township courts; special courts (for juvenile, municipal, and traffic offenses); courts martialhighest court(s): Supreme Court of Justice (consists of court president, 6 vice-presidents, and 60-70 judges, and organized into 10 divisions); Constitutional Court (consists of court president and 8 judges); Supreme Administrative Court (number of judges determined by Judicial Commission of the Administrative Courts)judge selection and term of office: Supreme Court judges selected by the Judicial Commission of the Courts of Justice and approved by the monarch; judge term determined by the monarch; Constitutional Court justices - 3 judges drawn from the Supreme Court, 2 judges drawn from the Administrative Court, and 4 judge candidates selected by the Selective Committee for Judges of the Constitutional Court and confirmed by the Senate; judges appointed by the monarch to serve single 9-year terms; Supreme Administrative Court judges selected by the Judicial Commission of the Administrative Courts and appointed by the monarch; judges appointed for lifesubordinate courts: courts of first instance and appeals courts within both the judicial and administrative systems; military courts All Mon Region Democracy Party or AMRDP (vacant)Arakan National Party or ANP (vacant) (formed from the 2013 merger of the Rakhine Nationalities Development Party and the Arakan League for Democracy)National Democratic Force or NDF [KHIN MAUNG SWE]National League for Democracy or NLD [AUNG SAN SUU KYI]National Unity Party or NUP [THAN TIN]Pa-O National Organization or PNO [AUNG KHAM HTI]Shan Nationalities Democratic Party or SNDP [SAI AIK PAUNG]Shan Nationalities League for Democracy or SNLD [KHUN HTUN OO]Ta'ang National Party or TNP [AIK MONE]Union Solidarity and Development Party or USDP [THAN HTAY]Zomi Congress for Democracy or ZCD [PU CIN SIAN THANG]numerous smaller parties Chat Thai Phatthana Party or CTP (Thai Nation Development Party)Phumchai (Bhumjai) Thai Party or PJT (Thai Pride) [ANUTHIN Chanwirakun]Prachathipat Party or DP (Democrat Party) [ABHISIT Wechachiwa, also spelled ABHISIT Vejjajiva]Puea Thai Party (For Thais Party) or PTP [acting leader WIROT Paoin]Thai border: Ethnic Nationalities Council or ENCFederation of Trade Unions-Burma or FTUB (exiled trade union and labor advocates)United Nationalities Federal Council or UNFC [NAI HONG SAR]inside Burma: Kachin Independence Organization or KIO [Gen. SAW MUTU SAY POE]Karenni National People's Party or KNPP [KHUN ABEL TWEED]United Wa State Army or UWSA [BAO YOU-XIANG]88 Generation Students Group [collective leadership] (pro-democracy movement)several other Chin, Karen, Mon, and Shan factionsnote: many restrictions on freedom of expression have been relaxed by the government; a limited number of political groups, other than parties, are approved by the government ADB, ARF, ASEAN, BIMSTEC, CP, EAS, EITI (candidate country), FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO (correspondent), ITU, ITUC (NGOs), NAM, OPCW (signatory), SAARC (observer), UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTOADB, APEC, ARF, ASEAN, BIMSTEC, BIS, CD, CICA, CP, EAS, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, NAM, OAS (observer), OIC (observer), OIF (observer), OPCW, OSCE (partner), PCA, PIF (partner), UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMOGIP, UNOCI, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTOchief of mission: Ambassador AUNG LYNN (since 16 September 2016)chancery: 2300 S Street NW, Washington, DC 20008telephone:  (202) 332-3344FAX:  (202) 332-4351consulate(s) general: Los Angeles, New Yorkchief of mission: Ambassador (vacant); Charge d'Affaires PHATTHARAWAN Wetchasat (since 27 October 2017)chancery: 1024 Wisconsin Avenue NW, Suite 401, Washington, DC 20007telephone:  (202) 944-3600FAX:  (202) 944-3611consulate(s) general: Chicago, Los Angeles, New Yorkchief of mission: Ambassador Scot MARCIEL (since 27 April 2016)embassy: 110 University Avenue, Kamayut Township, Rangoonmailing address: Box B, APO AP 96546telephone:  (1) 536-509, 535-756, 538-038FAX:  (1) 511-069chief of mission: Ambassador Glyn T.DAVIES (since 28 November 2015)embassy: 95 Wireless Road, Bangkok 10330mailing address: APO AP 96546telephone:  (2) 205-4000FAX:  (2) 254-2990, 205-4131consulate(s) general: Chiang Maidesign consists of three equal horizontal stripes of yellow (top), green, and red; centered on the green band is a large white five-pointed star that partially overlaps onto the adjacent colored stripes; the design revives the triband colors used by Burma from 1943-45, during the Japanese occupationfive horizontal bands of red (top), white, blue (double width), white, and red; the red color symbolizes the nation and the blood of life; white represents religion and the purity of Buddhism; blue stands for the monarchynote: similar to the flag of Costa Rica but with the blue and red colors reversed"name: ""Kaba Ma Kyei"" (Till the End of the World, Myanmar)lyrics/music: SAYA TINnote: adopted 1948; Burma is among a handful of non-European nations that have anthems rooted in indigenous traditions; the beginning portion of the anthem is a traditional Burmese anthem before transitioning into a Western-style orchestrated work""name: ""Phleng Chat Thai"" (National Anthem of Thailand)lyrics/music: Luang SARANUPRAPAN/Phra JENDURIYANGnote: music adopted 1932, lyrics adopted 1939; by law, people are required to stand for the national anthem at 08 every day; the anthem is played in schools, offices, theaters, and on television and radio during this time; ""Phleng Sanlasoen Phra Barami"" (A Salute to the Monarch) serves as the royal anthem and is played in the presence of the royal family and during certain state ceremonies"citizenship by birth: nocitizenship by descent only: both parents must be citizens of Burmadual citizenship recognized: noresidency requirement for naturalization: nonenote: an applicant for naturalization must be the child or spouse of a citizen Since the transition to a civilian government in 2011, Burma has begun an economic overhaul aimed at attracting foreign investment and reintegrating into the global economy.The interim military government created several interim institutions to promote reform and draft a new constitution, which was passed in a national referendum in August 2016. King PHUMIPHON Adunyadet passed away in October 2016 after 70 years on the throne; his only son, WACHIRALONGKON Bodinthrathepphayawarangkun, ascended the throne in December 2016. Thailand has also experienced violence associated with the ethno-nationalist insurgency in its southern Malay-Muslim majority provinces.
Since January 2004, thousands have been killed and wounded in the insurgency.tropical monsoon; cloudy, rainy, hot, humid summers (southwest monsoon, June to September); less cloudy, scant rainfall, mild temperatures, lower humidity during winter (northeast monsoon, December to April)party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreementsparty to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlandssigned, but not ratified: Law of the Seacontrols only land route from Asia to Malaysia and Singapore; ideas for the construction of a canal across the Kra Isthmus that would create a bypass to the Strait of Malacca and shorten shipping times around Asia continue to be discussedhighest population density is found in and around Bangkok; significant population clusters found througout large parts of the country, particularly north and northeast of Bangkok and in the extreme southern region of the country55,123,814note: estimates for this country take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2017 est.)68,414,135note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2017 est.)0-14 years: 26.85% (male 7,567,976/female 7,233,577)15-24 years: 17.75% (male 4,917,290/female 4,865,264)25-54 years: 42.36% (male 11,426,913/female 11,922,728)55-64 years: 7.52% (male 1,930,253/female 2,213,263)65 years and over: 5.53% (male 1,327,811/female 1,718,739) (2017 est.)0-14 years: 16.93% (male 5,933,269/female 5,649,864)15-24 years: 14.17% (male 4,943,583/female 4,752,038)25-54 years: 46.32% (male 15,677,322/female 16,009,399)55-64 years: 12% (male 3,851,575/female 4,358,837)65 years and over: 10.58% (male 3,165,799/female 4,072,449) (2017 est.)at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female0-14 years: 1.04 male(s)/female15-24 years: 1.03 male(s)/female25-54 years: 0.99 male(s)/female55-64 years: 0.89 male(s)/female65 years and over: 0.77 male(s)/femaletotal population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2016 est.)at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female0-14 years: 1.05 male(s)/female15-24 years: 1.04 male(s)/female25-54 years: 0.98 male(s)/female55-64 years: 0.89 male(s)/female65 years and over: 0.78 male(s)/femaletotal population: 0.97 male(s)/female (2016 est.)Buddhist 87.9%, Christian 6.2%, Muslim 4.3%, Animist 0.8%, Hindu 0.5%, other 0.2%, none 0.1%note: religion estimate is based on the 2014 national census, including an estimate for the non-enumerated population of Rakhine State, which is assumed to mainly affiliate with the Islamic faith (2014 est.)degree of risk: very highfood or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fevervectorborne diseases: dengue fever, malaria, and Japanese encephalitiswater contact disease: leptospirosisanimal contact disease: rabies (2016)"conventional long form: Union of Burmaconventional short form: Burmalocal long form: Pyidaungzu Thammada Myanma Naingngandaw (translated as the Republic of the Union of Myanmar)local short form: Myanma Naingngandawformer: Socialist Republic of the Union of Burma, Union of Myanmarnote: since 1989 the military authorities in Burma and the current parliamentary government have promoted the name Myanmar as a conventional name for their state; the US Government has not adopted the nameetymology: both ""Burma"" and ""Myanmar"" derive from the name of the majority Burmese Bamar ethnic group""conventional long form: Kingdom of Thailandconventional short form: Thailandlocal long form: Ratcha Anachak Thailocal short form: Prathet Thaiformer: Siametymology: ""Land of the Tai [People]""; the meaning of ""tai"" is uncertain, but may originally have meant ""human beings,"" ""people,"" or ""free people"""7 regions (taing-myar, singular - taing), 7 states (pyi ne-myar, singular - pyi ne), 1 union territoryregions: Ayeyawady (Irrawaddy), Bago, Magway, Mandalay, Sagaing, Taninthayi, Yangon (Rangoon)states: Chin, Kachin, Kayah, Kayin, Mon, Rakhine, Shanunion territory: Nay Pyi Taw76 provinces (changwat, singular and plural) and 1 municipality* (maha nakhon); Amnat Charoen, Ang Thong, Bueng Kan, Buri Ram, Chachoengsao, Chai Nat, Chaiyaphum, Chanthaburi, Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Chon Buri, Chumphon, Kalasin, Kamphaeng Phet, Kanchanaburi, Khon Kaen, Krabi, Krung Thep* (Bangkok), Lampang, Lamphun, Loei, Lop Buri, Mae Hong Son, Maha Sarakham, Mukdahan, Nakhon Nayok, Nakhon Pathom, Nakhon Phanom, Nakhon Ratchasima, Nakhon Sawan, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Nan, Narathiwat, Nong Bua Lamphu, Nong Khai, Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani, Pattani, Phangnga, Phatthalung, Phayao, Phetchabun, Phetchaburi, Phichit, Phitsanulok, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, Phrae, Phuket, Prachin Buri, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Ranong, Ratchaburi, Rayong, Roi Et, Sa Kaeo, Sakon Nakhon, Samut Prakan, Samut Sakhon, Samut Songkhram, Saraburi, Satun, Sing Buri, Si Sa Ket, Songkhla, Sukhothai, Suphan Buri, Surat Thani, Surin, Tak, Trang, Trat, Ubon Ratchathani, Udon Thani, Uthai Thani, Uttaradit, Yala, Yasothonhistory: previous 1947, 1974 (suspended until 2008); latest drafted 9 April 2008, approved by referendum ; amended 2015amendments: proposals require at least 20% approval by the Assembly of the Union membership; passage of amendments to sections of the constitution on basic principles, government structure, branches of government, state emergencies, and amendment procedures requires 75% approval by the Assembly and approval in a referendum by absolute majority of registered voters; passage of amendments to other sections requires only 75% Assembly approval (2017)many previous; draft of latest completed 29 March 2016, approved by referendum 7 August 2016, signed by the king 6 April 2017; note - the final version has several changes not reflected in the one passed by referendum (2016)"chief of state: President HTIN KYAW (since 30 March 2016); Vice Presidents MYINT SWE (since 30 March 2016) and HENRY VAN THIO (since 30 March 2016); note - the president is both chief of state and head of governmenthead of government: President HTIN KYAW (since 30 March 2016); Vice Presidents MYINT SWE (since 30 March 2016) and HENRY VAN THIO (since 30 March 2016)note: a parliamentary bill creating the position of ""state counsellor"" was signed into law by President HTIN KYAW on 6 April 2016; a state counsellor serves the equivalent term of the president and is similar to a prime minister in that the holder acts as a link between the parliament and the executive branchstate counsellor: State Counselor AUNG SAN SUU KYI (since 6 April 2016); she concurrently serves as minister of foreign affairs and minister for the office of the presidentcabinet: Cabinet appointments shared by the president and the commander-in-chiefelections/appointments: president indirectly elected by simple majority vote by the full Assembly of the Union from among 3 vice-presidential candidates nominated by the Presidential Electoral College (consists of members of the lower and upper houses and military members); the other 2 candidates become vice-presidents (president elected for a 5-year term); election last held on 15 March 2016 (next to be held in 2021)election results: HTIN KYAW elected president; Assembly of the Union vote - HTIN KYAW (NLD) 360, MYINT SWE (USDP) 213, HENRY VAN THIO (NLD) 79 (652 votes cast)"chief of state: King WACHIRALONGKON Bodinthrathepphayawarangkun, also spelled Vajiralongkorn Bodindradebayavarangkun (since 1 December 2016); note - King PHUMIPHON Adunyadet, also spelled BHUMIBOL Adulyadej (since 9 June 1946) died 13 October 2016head of government: Interim Prime Minister Gen.These reforms included releasing hundreds of political prisoners, signing a nationwide cease-fire with several of the country's ethnic armed groups, pursuing legal reform, and gradually reducing restrictions on freedom of the press, association, and civil society.