Prachatai

Unifying women’s groups in a divided society in Thailand’s Deep South

February 19, 2018

Adam John “The absence of a united women’s coalition hinder a collective and strategic effort to call for inclusive and gender-sensitive peacebuilding”, argues Firdaus Abdulsomad in her Master’s thesis entitled ‘Women’s participation in the Patani Peace Process : a case study of the barriers to women’s participation in building peace in Patani’ which...
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Businessmen win bid for Somsak’s portrait by Khai Maew

February 19, 2018

Will you pay over 200,000 baht for a painting that you cannot hang even in your house? A group of businessmen has won the bid for a portrait of an exiled historian by satirical cartoon page. One of them said that he has to keep the artwork in secret due to its sensitivity.?...
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7 anti-coal hunger strikers admitted to hospital

February 16, 2018

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has urged to the junta to negotiate with anti-coal protesters after seven hunger strikers were admitted to hospital. ? On 15 February 2018, the NHRC expressed support for a rally at the UN building, Bangkok. The rally urged the junta to withdraw its plans to build coal-fired...
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Court revokes punishment against Thai PBS for monarchy debates

February 15, 2018

The Administrative Court has nullified an order that fined Thai PBS for broadcasting political talks about the Thai monarchy.? ? On 15 February 2018, the Administrative Court ruled to invalidate a fine of 50,000 baht issued by the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) to Thai PBS for broadcasting political discussions about the...
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Another draftee dies from punishment

February 15, 2018

The authorities have claimed that a draftee in Chanthaburi died of heat stroke. The soldier’s father found no injury marks on his body. ? On 14 February 2018, a Facebook page Suara Patani reported that Muhammad-irafan Jae-mae, a conscript of the Royal Thai Marine Corps, was subjected to punishments (colloquially called ‘repairing’) until...
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Love from the other side of the world: exiled junta critic Nuttigar

February 15, 2018

“Goodbye” might be a symbol of the end of love for most people, but for a lèse majesté exiled junta critic, Nuttigar Woratunyawit, saying goodbye is an act of love. ? In April 2016, soldiers arrested Nuttigar Woratunyawit and seven other individuals and detained them incommunicado. The authorities alleged that she committed sedition...
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Army sues Deep South human rights defender for exposing torture on TV

February 14, 2018

Despite a court ruling, the Thai Army has filed a defamation lawsuit against a torture victim in the Deep South, who exposed his experience on TV in support of an anti-torture bill.? ? On 14 February 2018, the Internal Security Operations Command (SOC) Region 4 filed a criminal defamation charge against Isma-ae Tae,...
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Authorities intimidate pro-elections protesters outside Bangkok

February 13, 2018

The authorities have summoned a student activist who planned to hold a pro-election rally in Chiang Mai. Meanwhile, the police are searching for a pro-election protester in Buriram.? ? On 13 February 2018, a student activist (name withheld due to privacy concerns) from the Liberal Assembly of Chiang Mai University for Democracy (LACMUD)...
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Tom Dundee faces fourth lèse majesté charge

February 13, 2018

A singer-turned-red-shirt-activist has pled guilty to his fourth lèse majesté charge for comparing Thailand with Denmark, where the King has to stop at traffic lights. ? On 13 February 2018, the Bangkok Criminal Court summoned Thanat Thanawatcharanon, 60, to attend his trial for lèse majesté. Thanat’s stage name is Tom Dundee . A...
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Beware the Beware the Scam Scam

February 13, 2018

Harrison George They are a staple of social media. The latest that I received warned against a ‘new’ scam when you check into a hotel.? You’ve handed your credit card to the reception desk who take from it a deposit against which they will debit any extra charges for wildly overpriced miniature booze...
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Rangsiman faces charges from 2016 after weekend protest

February 12, 2018

After Rangsiman Rome led a protest on Saturday attended by hundreds, Bangkok police transferred the pro-democracy activist to Khon Kaen to face prosecution for campaigning against the junta’s constitution in 2016.? ? On 11 February 2018, the police transferred Rome from Bangkok to Mueang Khon Kaen Police Station to hear accusations of violating...
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Netiwit petitions court to revoke Chula punishment

February 9, 2018

The former president of the Student Council of Chulalongkorn University has petitioned the Administrative Court to invalidate the university’s order that punished him for protesting during a university initiation ceremony.? ? On 9 February 2018, Netiwit Chotiphatphaisal and his lawyer submitted a petition to the Central Administrative Court. He asked the court to...
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Creation amid a conflict in Thailand’s Deep South (1)

February 9, 2018

Hara Shintaro Before the intensification of Southern Thailand’s long-running insurgency in the early 2000s, the region, (known as Patani) lacked a developed art scene, and the conflict which erupted in 2004 seemed to have devastated artistic creation among the local population. However, in the middle of the endless armed conflict, a new generation...
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MBK39 report to police, released free of bail

February 8, 2018

The 39 pro-election protesters have reported to the police to hear accusations. Bangkok courts released them without bail.?? ? On 8 February 2018, 34 out of the 39 pro-election protesters known as MBK39 reported to Pathumwan Police Station to hear accusations against them. The junta accused the group of joining a public assembly...
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Thailand: Drop Criminal Defamation Lawsuits against 14 Myanmar Workers

February 7, 2018

Fortify Rights (Bangkok, February 6, 2018)—Thammakaset Company Limited should immediately drop criminal defamation charges against 14 migrant workers from Myanmar who alleged serious labor rights violations, and Thai authorities should decriminalize defamation, Fortify Rights said today. The trial is scheduled to commence in the Don Muang Magistrates Court in Bangkok tomorrow and is...
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Junta files more charges against pro-election MBK39

February 7, 2018

A network of Thai scholars has launched a fundraising campaign to seek two million baht for the bail of the 39 pro-election protesters. The junta has also filed more charges against them for violating the ban on public assembly. ? On 6 February 2018, Nuttha Mahattana, one of the protesters, revealed that the...
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Peace TV faces 15-days broadcasting ban

February 6, 2018

The Thai media regulator has the suspended broadcasting licence of a TV station run by the redshirts. This is the fourth broadcasting ban of the channel under the junta regime.? ? On 6 February 2018, Thida Thavornseth, an executive of Peace TV, posted on her Facebook account that the National Broadcasting and Telecommunication...
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14 villagers face charges for supporting We Walk

February 6, 2018

The police and soldiers have summoned eight villagers in Phayao during the night and later accused them of violating the junta’s ban on public gathering. The villagers were prosecuted after holding a campaign in support of the civil rights march from Bangkok to Khon Kaen.? ? On 6 February 2018, the police accused...
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Signatories of Pro-Prawit online campaign drop to 50 after bots detected

February 5, 2018

The number of signatories in an online campaign supporting the deputy junta head has dramatically decreased from almost about 20,000 to 50 after Change.org had detected the use of internet bots to boost up signatories.? ? On 5 February 2018, Warisara Sornpet, Director of Thailand’s Change.org, revealed to the media that the website...
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Graffiti artist faces intimidation over mural mocking Prawit

February 5, 2018

An anonymous graffiti artist has vanished after saying that the police are hunting him for painting a mural mocking the deputy junta head in public.? ? The anonymous street artist-activist complained that security forces were persecuting him for expressing himself in a message posted to his Facebook page over the weekend. ? “To...
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Rebranding Thailand: why is junta so obsessed with wordplay?

February 4, 2018

Kornkritch Somjittranukit ? During the past four years, the junta’s National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) has added many terms to the dictionary of Thai politics. At the beginning of their regime, the NCPO coined the term “Returning Happiness”, which later became the name of a weekly TV programme that junta leader...
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Yala market… the breath of life for all faiths (2)

February 4, 2018

Soraya Jamjuree, Kamnoeng Chamnankit and Nihusna Kuno A story about the family of a Buddhist Thai woman killed by a motorcycle bomb in Yala market on 22 Jan. A group of Deep South women activists have proposed measures to make markets a safe space for everybody.? ? The market has been the breath...
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Prachatai poll: a military party may not be as popular as Prayut hopes

February 3, 2018

? After junta leader Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha announced that the election may be held in November 2018, various political groups, including the junta's National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) itself, have shown their political agenda to the public. On one hand, the junta last November posed a question to the people: “Does...
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Police arrest 4 activists for mocking Prawit in public

February 2, 2018

Bangkok police have arrested four activists who performed a mime mocking the deputy junta head in public. The four have been fined for violating the public assembly law, which prohibits a public gathering of five people or more. ? On 2 February 2018, the authorities arrested four activists from a pro-democracy group called...
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Journalist among 39 people summoned for pro-election protest

February 2, 2018

Among 39 individuals who were summoned for joining the anti-junta protest on Saturday is at least one journalist from Khaosod Newspaper.? ? Noppakow Kongsuwan, a journalist from Khaosod, told Prachatai that he was at the protest at the Bangkok Art and Cultural Centre, Siam Square, on Saturday in his capacity as a journalist....
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Intimidation against We Walk continues despite court’s ruling

February 2, 2018

Despite a recent ruling from Administrative Court ordering the authorities to facilitate the civil right march, the local authorities in Nakhon Ratchasima have pressured the civil right march to leave the area two days earlier than planned.? ? On 1 February 2018, about 10 local government officials visited participants of We Walk, A...
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You’re never too old to learn (and you’re never too young for a test)

February 2, 2018

Harrison George To judge from the cracks and potholes, the soi hasn’t been resurfaced in decades.? Maybe not since the emergency makeover when a daily motorcade of Mercs began transporting royal offspring to the school nearby. The school itself has had many lavish refurbishments in that time. ?They are boasted about in the...
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4 years after the anti-election PDRC protests: how’s ‘reform before elections’ doing?

February 2, 2018

? Four years ago, on February 2, 2014, People’s Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) protesters, led by Suthep Thaugsuban, forcefully shut down many polling stations in Bangkok and the South. Many citizens who came to vote were prevented from entering the booths and some were assaulted by PDRC mobs. A day earlier, red shirts...
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Ratchaburi referendum verdict not a good sign for freedom of expression in Thailand

February 2, 2018

Sarayut Tangprasert ? On 29 January 2018, the Ratchaburi Provincial Court acquitted Prachatai journalist Taweesak Kerdpoka and the other four activists from the New Democracy Movement. They were accused of distributing stickers to persuade people to reject the junta’s constitution in the 2016 referendum. The only evidence was Vote No stickers found in...
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NHRC to investigate Human Rights Watch reports

February 1, 2018

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) will scrutinise two reports from Human Rights Watch (HRW) previously denounced by the Foreign Ministry. The new constitution orders the NHRC to investigate reports on human rights in Thailand, said a commissioner.? ? On 1 January 2018, Wat Tingsamit, the NHRC chairman, revealed that the Commission would...
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