Thailand's junta leader has told a Japanese newspaper that the military will return to the barracks once a civilian government is chosen, but he stopped short of ruling out another coup "if something cannot be solved" by the new government.

Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha told the Nikkei newspaper, "The military has its proper role as a government agency, so don't worry."

When asked about the possibility of another coup, Prayuth didn't answer directly, but said that "Thailand is different from other countries. If something cannot be solved, the military will solve it."

The interview was published online in English by the Nikkei Asian Review.

Prayuth, who is on a visit to Japan, led a coup that toppled the government last May and assumed the premiership later in 2014.