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Families call on government for answers to alleged activist abductions

Caitlin Ashworth

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Families call on government for answers to alleged activist abductions | Thaiger
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Families of those who were allegedly abducted while abroad are calling on the government to give answers to the missing cases. The families gathered together yesterday in remembrance of those they lost from enforced disappearances.

Recently, protests sparked after the June disappearance of Wanchalearm Satsaksit who was living in exile in Cambodia. Surveillance footage shows Wanchalearm, a Thai Monarchy critic, appearing to get forced into a car. Activists say that he was abducted, and some suspect he was murdered.

His sister, Sitanan, says both Thai and Cambodian governments could not give her much information about what happened to her brother.

“Thai people should be educated about the torture and enforced disappearance law. It would be a relief to know that similar cases would be followed up in the future.”

Kanya Theerawut says her son Siam was living in exile and went missing after being extradited from Vietnam. He faced charges for violating the lèse majesté law after his performance in a comedy play “The Wolf Bride.”

“I don’t understand why he had to run away from his country for playing a role in a theatre.”

The daughter of Tanong Pho-an, a labour leader who opposed a 1994 labour law, says that when her father was abducted she realised that the army could easily abduct and kill people. They could claim it was for national security reasons, she says.

Some people are critical of the new draft of a torture and enforced disappearance bill which would allow the Department of Special Investigation to intervene in the cases.

A legal advisor for the International Commission of Jurists says the torture and enforced disappearance draft does not specify the definition of “enforced disappearance” and does not outline the involvement of military court.

A Human Rights Watch advisor says the government does not honour their commitment to prevent international enforced disappearances.

“The government’s draft doesn’t correspond to international regulations and it should not be encouraged. Thai people should support the public draft to enter the House so that the new law is in line with international standards.”

SOURCES: Nation Thailand | Bangkok Post

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Monday, August 31, 2020 at 1:20 pm

    A waste of time. The government either ordered the abductions, or allowed the abductions.
    Thai government will soon become as nasty and corrupt as the worst in Africa.

  2. Avatar

    hi

    Monday, October 5, 2020 at 8:25 pm

    Every weekend i used to pay a quick visit this
    web site, for the reason that i want enjoyment, for the
    reason that this this website conations genuinely nice funny stuff too.

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Caitlin Ashworth is a writer from the United States who has lived in Thailand since 2018. She graduated from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies in 2016. She was a reporter for the Daily Hampshire Gazette In Massachusetts. She also interned at the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia and Sarasota Herald-Tribune in Florida.

Crime

Immigration police arrest Frenchman on drug charges, 3 other foreigners for overstay

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Immigration police arrest Frenchman on drug charges, 3 other foreigners for overstay | Thaiger

Immigration police arrested a French man who was allegedly involved in a crime network who allegedly smuggled cannabis, and arrested 3 other foreigners on overstay charges. Police say the crime network sold cannabis to foreigners living in tourist cities in Thailand.

Officers say they suspect there are more people involved in the alleged smuggling operation on the Eastern seaboard, which includes Chon Buri and Rayong. Police are now launching an investigation.

Police were tipped off earlier this year about an alleged French gang selling cannabis to tourists. Apparently, the drug suspects would rent rooms to store the cannabis and frequently change locations. Foreigners had rented a room off a soi in Bangkok, but the manager noticed they were acting suspicious. No one appeared to actually be living in the room and people would stop by the room for less than an hour, the manager told police.

Police arrested a man who was stopping by the room. Officers say the 28 year old, identified as Samy, had a suitcase filled with dried cannabis and scales. He faces charges for possession and distribution of a Category 5 narcotic.

The police went to the man’s apartment in the Charoen Nakhon area and arrested 2 French nationals, ages 27 and 28, and a 29 year old woman from the UK for overstaying their visas. Police say they had thrown cannabis and smoking equipment out the window before officers entered the room.

SOURCE: Thai Visa

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Crime

Thailand hoping to be upgraded to a Tier 1 nation in anti-human trafficking efforts

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Thailand hoping to be upgraded to a Tier 1 nation in anti-human trafficking efforts | Thaiger
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Thailand is hoping its newest anti-human trafficking report will earn an upgrade from the US from Tier 2 to Tier 1. The report was submitted to the Washington’s Trafficking in Persons Report. Deputy government spokeswoman, Rachada Dhnadirek, said the government is ready to be upgraded after remaining on Tier 2 for 3 years in a row. Those nations who fall on the Tier 2, are deemed to not be fully complying with the minimum standards set out in the US’ Trafficking Victims Protection Act. Those on the Tier 2, however, are supposed to be making efforts to comply with the minimum standards.

Before 2018, Thailand was placed in Tier 3, which is for nations who don’t fully comply with the minimum standards and are not making efforts to do so. Then, Thailand was upgraded to Tier 2 after making progress compared to the previous year.

Rachada says Thailand submitted the 2020 TIP Report on February 2 and a report on progress in its anti-human trafficking operations from January to March of this year to the US embassy on April 3. The data includes the number of arrests and punishments for human-trafficking offences. Thailand also has created a new plan, making it the first in Asia to introduce such a plan. That plan is called the National Action Plan on Business and Human Rights.

Rachada says now Thailand is processing human trafficking cases more quickly by shortening the investigation time to 70 days as of last year. In 2015, the investigation time was 118 days. She says the country has also set up centres to help LGBT human-trafficking victims as well as helping migrant workers with work-related issues.

Thailand has also introduced the PROTECT-U app for smartphones in which human-trafficking victims can access protection and launch complaints in 7 different languages. The app was developed by the Social Development and Human Security Ministry.

SOURCE: The Phuket News

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Crime

Phuket man shot by off-duty police officer now paralysed

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Phuket man shot by off-duty police officer now paralysed | Thaiger
Phuket Police Station / Google Maps

A 25 year old Phuket man who was allegedly beaten and shot by an off-duty, drunken police officer, will never walk again as he remains paralysed in the hospital. The news, according to doctors at Vachira Phuket Hospital, comes after Aroon Thongplab, was shot from a close range, with the bullet hitting his spine.

The man was a noodle vendor and was collecting a bowl from a customer on Bangla Road when he was allegedly shot by Pornthep Channarong of the Phuket Provincial Police at around 6am. Doctors told his wife about his prognosis after he woke up from a coma and underwent surgery to increase his prospects of being able to sit up. His wife, who is only known by her surname as Kulthida, told The Phuket News that she received news that he would never walk again.

“He cannot feel or move the lower part from his waist. Doctors just gave him spine surgery last week, so that he can sit. However, the doctors cannot assure that the surgery will work. We have to wait to see if his recovery goes well along with physiotherapy.”

Pornthep was discharged from the Royal Thai Police less than a day after he allegedly shot the noodle vendor. Now, he is facing charges of attempted murder, firing a weapon in a public area, and carrying a firearm in a public area without a necessary reason. But those charges have come slowly, according to Kulthida.

“I have already asked Patong Police, and they told me that at this stage the report to file (with the public prosecutor) is about 90% complete. I am also waiting for a notice from the court. Today, officers from Region 8 Police came to the hospital to question Aroon, but he has not been able to speak… I asked them about the bail conditions, and they told me that the suspect is still in jail.”

The Phuket Provincial Court is allowing Pornthep to go out on bail, despite the Royal Thai Police asking the court to keep in locked up.

SOURCE: The Phuket News

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