Connect with us

Thailand

Govt denies secret prisons, tightens security at US Embassy

Published

 on 

Govt denies secret prisons, tightens security at US Embassy | Thaiger

PHUKET MEDIA WATCH

– Thailand news selected by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

Govt denies secret prisons, tightens security at US Embassy
The Nation / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: Government figures yesterday denied the existence of secret prisons or the torture of suspected foreign terrorists here while being sceptical of a security alert issued by the US Embassy in Thailand.

They rejected aspersions cast on Thailand after a recent report of the US Senate on the Central Intelligence Agency’s harsh interrogation program against terrorism suspects.

“A secret prison has not existed here and there are no reports of torture in Thailand. No Thai agencies have carried out such operations,” Prime Minister’s Office Minister Suwaphan Tanyuvardhana said. “There have never been cases of bringing in these sorts of prisoners. We have never conducted any illegal activities with the US.”

Suwaphan, a former director of the National Intelligence Agency, said he did not see Thailand being mentioned anywhere in the report. “The incidents mentioned in the report took place many years ago Anyway, I can assure [you] there are no secret prisons or torture in Thailand.”

He said the authorities would have to heighten security measures after reports that the US Embassy here had stepped up security and warned American citizens of possible terrorist attacks. “Thailand has no information about threats but we will not take risks.”

Interior Minister General Anupong Paochinda affirmed that no secret prisons had existed in Thailand.

“The Army was unaware of any secret prison in Thailand when I served as the Army chief. At that time, I had given assurance that Thailand did not have any secret prisons,” Anupong said.

Armed Forces Supreme Commander General Worapong Sanganetra said he had no information regarding secret prisons or torture of suspected terrorists in Thailand.

He also said it was “normal” for the US authorities to warn their nationals. In response to the US warning of possible terrorist attacks in Thailand, the general said security personnel were carefully dealing with this matter.

The US Senate report mentions Thailand many times for its role in facilitating and sheltering terrorism suspects as well as helping US authorities capture some key suspects. Years ago, leaked reports indicated that the CIA had used facilities in Thailand for detention, harsh interrogation and torture, but the US Senate report, which was heavily censored in many parts, did not mention these clearly.

Paradorn Pattanathabutr, a former National Security Council chief who advises Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-o-cha, said yesterday: “We have never allowed the US to use our space for detention or torture and there have never been any requests to do so.”

Panitan Wattanayagorn, an adviser to Defence Minister General Prawit Wongsuwan, said one policy followed by every Thai government was that no foreigners would be allowed to operate any detention facility in Thailand.

A political-science lecturer at Chulalongkorn University, Panitan said Thai governments in the past often denied the existence of secret prisons or detention places operated by the CIA for suspected terrorists. However, he noted that there was some classified intelligence that could not be accessed by state agencies.

Panitan said the security agencies had concluded that Thailand was not a target for terrorist attacks. However, regular monitoring would continue.

Pol General Jakthip Chaichinda, the deputy national police chief in charge of security affairs, yesterday said he had instructed the Metropolitan Police to provide increased security at the US Embassy here after the warning of possible terrorist attacks on Americans.

Meanwhile, the tourism industry said the US warning would have no impact on tourist arrivals to Thailand.

Association of Thai Travel Agents president Sisdivachr Cheewarattanaporn said there had been no cancellations by tourists scheduled to visit Thailand in November and December.

“The government has reacted quickly over the warning in order to give confidence to tourists,” he said.

Thai Hotels Association president Surapong Techaruvichit said hotels in the capital and all major tourist destinations were on high alert after the US warning.

— Phuket Gazette Editors

 

Get more from The Thaiger

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Thailand15 mins ago

Firework maker killed in firework accident in eastern Thailand

Thailand16 mins ago

Lao star swindled by Thai celebrity, more than 500 million baht lost

Thailand1 hour ago

Father chains up daughter and forces her to return to abusive husband

Sponsored2 hours ago

Top 5 Backlink Agencies in Bangkok for Your Business

China1 hour ago

China mulls downgrading Covid-19 status as protests continue

Business2 hours ago

Tesla to launch in Thailand this month

Apple2 hours ago

Two women sue Apple saying AirTag product gives stalkers access to their whereabouts

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Thailand2 hours ago

Electioneering: Thaksin’s daughter vows to end poverty in Thailand

Thailand2 hours ago

Thai travel agent group says travel restrictions hamper tourism growth

Hot News2 hours ago

Thailand pushes for more international flights as tourism surges

Crime3 hours ago

Man stabs passersby in Bangkok, 1 killed 1 injured

Thailand4 hours ago

VIDEO: Shit hits the fan as man attacks friend for mocking him in a leaked sex tape

Indonesia5 hours ago

Thailand teaches Indonesia how to legalise cannabis

Expats5 hours ago

A British musician bangs drums of discontent after breaking leg in Thailand

Thailand6 hours ago

Thailand to celebrate its 10 millionth tourist on December 10

Cannabis News6 hours ago

Homeowner beats cannabis thief to death in northeast Thailand

Thailand1 year ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism2 years ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Trending