Thailand: Junta arrests ex-minister for questioning general's 'sexist remark' on Yingluck

Junta leader General Prawit Wongsuwan's said that soldiers photograph Yingluck because she is pretty.

A Thai politician who accused a senior general in the ruling military administration of passing gender-based slur on former prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra has been charged under harsh computer crimes laws.

Former minister Watana Muangsook was arrested from his home on Wednesday and detained at a military camp for several hours, his party said.

Watana, a leader of the Puea Thai Party of Yingluck, had criticised the junta leader for making sexist comments on the former prime minister.

Watana was responding to the junta leader General Prawit Wongsuwan's comment that soldiers photograph Yingluck because she is pretty.

Watana citied Prawit in a Facebook post and asked the military not to follow Yingluck, who was ousted in 2014 in a military coup.

After the police slapped criminal charges on Watana, the former commerce minister said he would seek bail.

"I have prepared 100,000 baht ($2,819)," Watana told reporters at the Bangkok South Criminal Court, Reuters reported.

Yingluck, who became the first woman prime minister of Thailand after a 2011 general election, offered support to Watana, saying his arrest bodes ill for Thailand's political future.

"His detention will further damage Thailand's image internationally," she said in a Facebook post.

After Yingluck's ouster in 2014, the ruling junta curtailed civil freedoms. Political dissent has been suppressed, with opposition leaders and rights activists being booked under charges of computer crimes and sedition.

Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha said opposition politicians have been warned many times in the past.

"We have warned many times .. Don't say anything that causes divisions," Prayuth said.