Former Thai PM Thaksin had coronavirus but recovered: Source

It is believed former Thai prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra contracted the virus after visiting a food court.
It is believed former Thai prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra contracted the virus after visiting a food court.PHOTO: EPA-EFE

BANGKOK (AFP) - Former Thai prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra tested positive for coronavirus and was treated in hospital last month but has since recovered, a source close to the exiled billionaire told AFP on Saturday (Oct 3).

The 71-year-old lives in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates and spent a fortnight in hospital before being discharged in the middle of September, they said.

"It's true he was infected several weeks ago, but now he has recovered. He joked that he was on trend," a source within Pheu Thai, a political party linked to Thaksin, told AFP, asking not to be named.

It is believed he contracted the virus after visiting a food court.

Thaksin was ousted from power in a 2006 military coup and fled the country in 2008.

He was convicted in Thailand on corruption charges.

His sister Yingluck became prime minister in 2011 before being removed in another coup three years later.

Revelations of Thaksin's brush with coronavirus coincided with bombshell news US President Donald Trump and first lady Melania have tested positive.

Trump has been given an experimental treatment in hospital and has been knocked off the campaign trail just a month ahead of election day.