Connect with us

Thailand

Media seek clarity over ‘peacekeeping’ officers

Published

 on 

PHUKET MEDIA WATCH

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

Media seek clarity over ‘peacekeeping’ officers
The Nation / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: Four media organizations yesterday issued a joint statement asking the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) to shed more light on Peace and Order Maintaining (POM) officers in order to ensure that the media and the general public will not be affected by Article 44.

The four organizations – Thai Journalists Association, National Press Council of Thailand, News Broad-casting Council of Thailand and Thai Broadcast Journalists Association – were concerned about certain clauses under Article 44 related to what constitutes a threat to “security”.

They say the order gives the NCPO, led by Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha, a lot of room for interpretation. “What seems to be problematic here is the interpretation of the word ‘security’, which is broad. It could give power users the opportunity to over-exercise their authority,” said Attasit Pankaew, a political scientist at Thammasat University.

The lack of clarity about the definition of “security” could lead to self-censorship of the media.

On Wednesday night, the government replaced martial law with Article 44, under which the conditions imposed by the NCPO seem to threaten media freedom. The interpretation of the clause, threat to “security”, which might lead the authorities to stop the media from broadcasting, has sparked huge concerns among the media.

“Order No 5 of Article 44 has clearly highlighted the possibility of censorship by state authorities,” said Pattara Khumphitak, president of the National Press Council of Thailand.

If the authorities decide to interpret something as being distorted information harmful to security, this may directly hurt the media and people’s freedom of expression at large.

Matters related to the order of the NCPO’s chief are also unclear, according to Pattara. The NCPO should be more precise about when it has to step in and exercise power.

“Some guidelines on the exercising of power under this specific clause [related to freedom of press] should be provided to officials [to avoid excessive use of power],” he said.

Nutchapokorn Nummueng, a communications officer at the I-law Freedom of Expression Documentation Center, also highlighted the importance of being more precise about the conditions under which the media could be temporarily prevented from broadcasting information.

Army chief General Udomdej Sitabutr reacted to this concern by insisting that officials would have no need to intervene in matters that do not touch upon security issues. “I would like to ask for cooperation, in particular, from media, which plays a major role in the establishment of common understanding”, he said.

— 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.

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

Follow Thaiger by email:

Thailand27 mins ago

Thailand News Today | Foreigners anger Chiang Mai locals for kissing in temple

World28 mins ago

Former Coventry footballer seriously ill in Thai hospital

Crime33 mins ago

Weapons used by jealous Thai man to murder and chop up lover found

Guides38 mins ago

Foodie Zone: Should you try Keto diet? 2022

Chiang Mai43 mins ago

River in Chiang Mai overflows, floods spread

Thailand1 hour ago

3-year jail term for carrying crops, fruit & veg into Japan

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

Bank repossesses the wrong house in central Thailand

Thailand2 hours ago

Innocent man jailed 7 months for 15.8 million baht theft demands justice

Weather2 hours ago

Thailand’s cold season expected to hit in late October

Thailand3 hours ago

ฺThai boxer blackmails 20 women into sending nude pics

World3 hours ago

South Korea gives North Korea a warning

Visa3 hours ago

Philippines offers attractive alternative to Thailand’s 10 year LTR visa

Phuket4 hours ago

Thousands join Chinese ceremony at Phuket Vegetarian Festival

Coronavirus (Covid-19)4 hours ago

Bang Sue’s Central Vaccination Centre officially closed

Thailand4 hours ago

Nuan the cat feline good about upcoming APEC meeting

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