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UPDATE – Three police questioned over Yingluck’s disappearance

Tim Newton

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At of this morning (Friday), three police officers, including a deputy commander, appear to have been involved in helping the former PM Yingluck Shinawatra flee Thailand, two days before she was set to appear to hear the verdict of the Supreme Court over her and her Government’s involvement in the failed rice-pledging scheme.

A police colonel, who hasn’t been named at this stage, and two other officers have been questioned by Royal Thai Police at the Bangkok HQ as suspects in assisting Yingluck get from Bangkok to the Thai/Cambodia border near Sa Keaw. They have allegedly confessed to the allegations of aiding and abetting the former Thai PM. Once questioned, they were allowed to walk free without being charged. Sources say they could still be charged with using fake licence plates.

A Toyota Camry has been seized near Nakhon Pathom province. It’s believed to be the same sedan tracked by CCTV on the evening of Wednesday, August 23, two days before the verdict was to be handed down. The vehicle was tracked from Bangkok to the Cambodian border. Forensic police have been taking DNA and fingerprint samples from the car. A Mercedes Benz, identified earlier in the investigation, was also tracked on CCTV but, at this stage, has not been tracked down at this stage.

Government officials and police have consistently denied being involved in Yingluck Shinawatra’s departure from Thailand. The Former PM is thought to be residing in the UK or Dubai, both frequented by her brother and former fugitive PM, Thaksin Shinawatra.

PHOTO: The Nation

- Tim Newton

Tim Newton has lived in Thailand since 2012. An Australian, he has worked in the media, principally radio and TV, for nearly 40 years. He has won the Deutsche Welle Award for best radio talk program, presented 3,200 radio news bulletins in Thailand alone, hosted 360 daily TV news programs, produced 1,800 videos, TV commercials and documentaries and now produces digital media for The Thaiger - Website, Radio, TV, Instagram and Facebook.

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National

Thailand’s Rabies death toll up to 14 this year

The Thaiger & The Nation

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The death of a 19 year old in Buri Ram, to the east of Bangkok on the Cambodian border,  and a 55 year old in Rayong, east of Pattaya, has raised the death toll in Thailand as a result of Rabies this year to 14. Both deaths occurred over the past two weeks.

Dr Suwannachai Watanayingcharoen, director general of the Disease Control Department, says a 19 year old man in Buri Ram, who’d been bitten back in April on the shoulder and chest by a dog, was not vaccinated against rabies.

The same situation with a 55-year-old woman in Rayong, bitten by a stray dog in January, who opted for “magical” treatment from a practitioner of traditional folk medicine rather than go to hospital.

Suwannachai says the two people had died of rabies this year in Buri Ram, two in Rayong and one each in Surin, Songkhla, Trang, Nakhon Ratchasima, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Phatthalung, Nong Khai, Yasothon, Kalasin and Mukdahan.

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Same-sex civil union bill ready for Cabinet in two months

The Thaiger & The Nation

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A same-sex civil partnership law should be drafted and discussed before next year’s elections.

Pitikarn Sitthidech, the Rights and Liberties Protection Department chief, saystThe law, allowing same-sex couples to formally register as life partners, should be drafted by September.

It would then be submitted to Deputy PM and Justice Minister ACM Prajin Juntong, who would decide whether it should go to the Cabinet, she said.

Pitikarn says the sub-panel drafting the legislation that’s been hailed by some as a progressive step towards the legalisation of gay marriage would meet on July 25 to review its 63 articles. Panel members were likely to make adjustments, she said, some based on the experiences of other countries that have adopted similar legislation, such as Mexico, South Africa, Canada, Australia and Britain.


Pitikarn Sitthidech – Rights and Liberties Protection Department chief 

The bill will then be forwarded to the Rights Department’s law development committee for further tweaking in September, and then to Prajin, Pitikarn said. She pointed out that the process in some countries had taken up to 10 years, but Prajin wanted to fast-track Thailand’s version because of the many LGBT (lesbian, gay, transgendered and bisexual) citizens who deserve the same rights as everyone else.

Pitikarn said Prajin had insisted that the authors of the legislation understand the situation in society well and the sensitivities involved. He wanted guidelines set out to support the status of same-sex life partners registered in other countries who were now living in Thailand to ensure they enjoyed the rights to which they were entitled.

Prajin wanted it made clear which agency would handle registrations once the law comes into effect. And he expects the law to lay the foundation for the legalisation of gay marriage.

“Since the ministry began moving forward on this law, we have received good feedback from the LGBT community and a 60,000-name petition expressing support for the action, as well as much useful information,” Pitikarn said.

“I believe many more people are passively supporting this law – the many who haven’t yet expressed their LGBT status.”

SOURCE: The Nation

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Thaiger Radio News – Monday

The Thaiger

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