Wednesday, 3 October 2018

Ghent | The 12th Asia-Europe People Forum

We were so proud to be apart of the 12th Asia Europe People's Forum ( AEPF 12) in Ghent, Belgium during 29 September - 1 October 2018. The Asia-Europe People’s Forum, has been a strategic gathering of Asian and European civil society networks pursuing democratization and human rights, and social, economic and climate justice. The discussions and exchanges will result in an AEPF-Statement to be presented by AEPF-representatives at the beginning of the 2018 Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM)-summit, scheduled to take place in Brussels on 18-19 October 2018.

We had a great discussion during open space workshop on " Unending repression, promised election and restoration of democracy in Thailand"  We also engaged the participants in our campaign on "Free and fair election in Thailand".  

This opportunity, we urged international community to put pressure on the Thai military government to lift the restrictions on civil and political rights so that upcoming national elections can be free and fair.

Thank you Asia Europe People's Forum (AEPF) and Stiftung Asienhaus for having us. A huge thank you to everyone who participated in the open space discussion.















Many thanks to  Praphakorn Wongratanawin for lovely pictures

Please:
  • Attribute it to the Thailand Human Rights Campaign UK (or other organisations where specified)
  • Do not use any materials on our website for commercial gain (you can’t make money by reproducing our website)

Tuesday, 2 October 2018

Thailand's military government must deliver the free and fair elections

Thailand Human Rights Campaign joined the 12th Asia Europe People's Forum (AEPF12) during 29 September - 1 October 2018 in Ghent, Belgium

Unending Repression
Thailand has been ruled by a military junta since May 2014 when the army toppled a democratically elected Pheu Thai government led by Yingluck Shinawatra, promising to make Thailand a rights- respecting democratic country and that is far from reality after over 4 years.
Civil rights suffering
The National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO)-the ruling military government body has resorted to a range of tactics aims at silencing anyone who criticise them or raise concern over political developments in the country.
The military junta under Prime Minister Gen. Prayut Chan-ocha has banned political activities and public assembly, enforced media censorship, arbitrarily arrested dissidents, and detained civilians in military facilities. Authorities have used less majesty (insulting monarchy), sedition and computer crime charge to suppress free speech.
It’s unjustified suppression of the key human rights to freedom of expression, association, and peaceful assembly. Activists, including human rights defenders, have been targets. The suppression as extended to human rights researchers for their works on rights violations, lawyers for defending their clients, journalists for reporting on sensitive topics, academics for expressing opinion on academic freedom, and politicians for criticizing the government.

The lesson to be learned
In April 2016, the government enacted the Referendum Act, a law governing the constitutional referendum which was held on 7 August 2016. Article 61 of the Act provides for up to ten years imprisonment and a fine for “ anyone to disseminate texts, pictured or sounds that are inconsistent with the truth or in a violent, aggressive, rude, inciting or treating manner aimed at preventing a voter from casting a ballot to vote in any direction or not vote”.
Suppression of the campaigns on the Constitutional Referendum in 2016
In the month before the ballot, all critics voices were aggressively suppressed, with public forum cancelled, independent monitoring initiatives shut down, and books, pamphlets, letters, and other campaigns material seized.
In all, more than 100 individuals were charged with criminal offences relating thief peaceful activities, while dozen of students activists were arrested and arbitrarily detained for protesting against military rule. Hundred remain under investigation or be hide bar.
These tell us that human rights violations almost invariably intensify in the lead-up to polling day.

The 2019 General Elections
People remain skeptical as the regime has repeatedly postponed long-promise elections. The two bills were approved on September 12th by King Maha Vajiralongkorn and officially published in the Royal Gazette. Under the constitution, the government must comply with the new laws within 150 days from its enactment, expected to be held in May 2019.
Voters must elect 500 members to the Lower House, but military will effectively appoint 250 members to the Upper House. Both vote to select the prime minister, so the military still has the advantage and Prayut could be prime minister again.

The new military-backed constitution constrains further elected government with an appointed senate, and commits government to follow the military’s 20-year development plan.
Delays still possible
With special legislative powers accorded under Act 44, Prayut was allowed to implement any laws or regulations he saw it fit to maintain peace and stability.

The ongoing silencing of dissent
More than 200 people who have protested for elections have been charged with sedition-like offences. The authorities have repeatedly harassed and persecuted people for their speech, writing and internet posting critical of government agencies and officials under the Computer Crime Act. They faces up to five years in prison and fines for spreading false information and damage national security, if they found guilty.

Under the restrictions, the opposition parties have been unable to campaign and the military have used them as a method to shut down criticism.

Your support is needed
We urge international community to put pressure on the Thailand's military government to end repression and  lift restrictions on civil and political rights,including the Head of the NCPO Order 3/2015, the Head of the NCPO Order 13/2016, and the 2015 Peaceful Assembly Act so that upcoming national elections can be free and fair.

Download the leaflet, please click here

Friday, 28 September 2018

Asia Europe People's Forum (AEPE12) : "Unending Repression, Promised Election and Restoration of Democracy In Thailand"

This year we are pleased to join The 12th Asia Europe People’s Forum (AEPF12)  for the first time to raise awareness on human rights crisis in Thailand.

Date: Saturday, 29 September to Monday, 1 October 2018

Location: Ghent, Belgium

The overall aim of the AEPF 12 is to understand and learn from struggles and resistance over the past two decades in Asia and Europe that have confronted and challenged neoliberalism, corporate-led globalization and global capitalism in its various phases.


To know more about The Asia Europe People’s Forum (AEPF), visit https://www.aepf.info/aepf-program.


Come along and join us at our next action on Sunday, 30 September to discuss about unending repression, promised election and restoration of democracy in Thailand.

Download full program of the events please click here

Thursday, 21 June 2018

Stand up to the regime

Thank you to all for standing up to the regime and made the voice heard outside No 10 Downing Street in London during junta leader Gen.Prayuth Chan-ocha's meeting with Prim Minister Theresa May on 20th June.
We hope that the coup leader returns to Bangkok with a clear understanding to put highest priority on human rights in Thailand.













Please:
  • Attribute it to the Thailand Human Rights Campaign UK (or other organisations where specified)
  • Do not use any materials on our website for commercial gain (you can’t make money by reproducing our website)

Wednesday, 20 June 2018

Joint letter: Condemn Human Rights Abuses by the Thai Military Junta




WE CONDEMN HUMAN RIGHTS ABUSES BY
THE THAI MILITARY JUNTA


Thailand Human Rights Campaign, Stiftung Asienhaus (Germany) and Thai
Pro-Democracy Group are concerned about Thailand’s human rights crisis
under the military junta led by Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha. We are appalled that
the British government has invited this dictator to meet the British Prime Minister
on June 20.

The Thai military junta has banned political activity and public gatherings, made
peaceful expression subject to criminal prosecution, censored the mainstream
media and online social media, conducted hundreds of arbitrary arrests and
detained civilians in military detention camps. Hundreds of civilians continue to
face lengthy and unfair trials before military courts. In addition to this, the junta
has increased the use of the draconian lèse-majesté law against anyone accused
of criticising the monarchy. Since the 2014 military coup, nearly 70 people have
been charged under this law for posting or sharing
comments online. Trials in lèse-majesté cases are held behind closed doors.

Dozens of human rights defenders, more than 100 pro-democracy activists and
others, are currently being investigated and prosecuted under authoritarian laws
and decrees.

There has been no justice for past human rights violations, such as the 2010
dispersal of street protests. More than 90 people were killed and nearly 1,900
were wounded in the military crackdown on peaceful pro-democracy rallies.
During this military crackdown, Gen. Prayuth was army chief.  Abuses by soldiers
took place in full view of the Thai public and the World’s media. Not one soldier
or official has been held accountable for the 2010 state violence.

We are further concerned about UK weapons exports to Thailand and disappointed
that the British government fails to put human rights and democracy first and ban
the selling of arms to undemocratic and repressive regimes.

Thailand Human Rights Campaign UK
Stiftung Asienhaus (Germany)
Thai Pro-Democracy Group in UK
20th June 2018

Click here to download (English)
Click here to download (Thai) ดาวน์โหลด จดหมาย ภาษาไทย

Saturday, 10 March 2018

Freedom of speech to be protected

Everyone has the right to freedom of speech

Free speech is one of the most fundamental of all human rights. International Women's Day is an opportunity for women around the world to celebrate the progress that has been made in realizing human rights – unfortunately, Thailand has little to celebrate.

This is another year, we took this day to stand in solidarity with all those fearless women in Thailand by joining Million Women Rise to raise awareness about the crack down on free speech for women in Thailand 

Almost four years after the coup, the all-men junta still arrests and prosecutes critics of the government, bans political activity, censors the media, stifles freedom of speech, persecutes human rights and women’s rights defenders, silences lawyers and academics, and forces the whole population to live under the threat of a tyrannical government.

Happy International Women's Day! Thank you to everyone who joined us

Download the leaflets on Discrimination and violent against women in Thailand













Thursday, 21 September 2017

A plaque of Jatupat's face on the wall of honor

A plaque of Pai Jatupat's face has been added on the May 18 Memorial Foundation wall of honor.

A student activist and human rights defender Jatupat Boonpattararaksa  has been detained since 3 December 2016 for a lese majeste charge resulting from his sharing a BBC article on the life of King Vajiralongkorn on social media. 

In August, the Provincial Court of Khon Kaen sentenced Jatupat to two and a half years imprisonment for violating Article 112 of the Criminal Code, the lèse majesté law. Jatupat was originally sentenced to five years in jail, however this sentence was reduced after he pleaded guilty.

Since the military staged a coup in 2014, the so-called National Council for Peace and Order has been accused of using lese-majeste, sedition and cyber crime laws arbitrarily to crack down on activists. Jatupat became a target of the military and the police because he has fiercely fought for Thailand democracy.

Jatupat is the head of a student activist group called Dao Din at Khon Kaen University in north eastern Thailand, which advocates for democracy, social justice and human rights.

Jatupat has been doing a lot of human rights activities for the benefit of the public and he has been awarded a prestigious human rights award while awaiting for his sentence in prison. However, Jatupat  remained in detention under the country's harsh lese majesty law and the human rights award for Jatupat, was received by his parents on his behalf.




The Gwangju Prize for Human Rights is an award recognizing individuals or organisations that have made contributions to building human rights and bringing peace to the society. The award is given by the May 18 Memorial Foundation that was set up in 1994 to commemorate the democratic upheaval on May 18, 1980 that took away the life of hundreds of citizens in Gwangju, south of Korea.