Senior journalists have denounced the junta’s controversial Media Bill, arguing the junta wishes to entrench itself in power rather than promote truth and responsible media. On 22 February 2017, a panel of senior journalists and media officials at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Thailand warned that severe new media regulations proposed by the junta represent the military’s ambitions to maintain an influence in Thai politics even after the country transitions to a democratic system. Thepchai Yong, the President of the Thai Broadcas
Although the junta’s controversial new media bill has triggered outrage, human rights advocates point out that the Thai media should have been protesting the junta’s censorship regulations long ago. On 16 February 2017, at a seminar “Media (Non)Protection Bill: Freedom under Government Budget”, Suchada Chakpisuth observed that public opposition against the junta’s Media Protection Bill has been weak compared to the junta’s previous proposed laws. Suchada, a senio
Thai authorities have requested Lao PDR to extradite a group of five to six Thais for producing radio programmes deemed defamatory to the Thai Monarchy, even though this would be forbidden under the extradition treaty.
A photographer has travelled across Thailand to document suppressed stories of enforced disappearances and the country’s culture of impunity.
Despite Thailand’s famously appalling prison conditions, some ex-prisoners are preferring reimprisonment over the challenge of reintegrating into society. The punitive slant of Thailand’s judicial system threatens offenders with heavy sanctions, but offers few rehabilitation mechanisms to address the difficulties inmates face upon returning to life outside the prison gates.
Thailand’s junta has shown itself unwilling to reconsider the inclusion of capital punishment in its Organic Act on Political Parties.
New regulations on political parties have sparked debate over whether these will make parties more responsive to voters, or whether they will kill off many of Thailand’s current parties. On 7 December 2016, the Constitution Drafting Committee published the first draft of the Organic Act on Elections, a reform of regulations on political parties that comes under the new junta-backed constitution.
Thailand saw its first lèse majesté case under King Rama X, only two days after the king’s accession. Experts argue that this case is different from cases that occurred under King Rama IX.
Throughout modern Thailand’s history, Royal Anthem videos have played a significant role in transforming the foundations of royal legitimacy. While the palace previously emphasised the King’s commitment to his duties as ‘Father of the Land’, anthem videos now push the Thai people’s duty to love the monarchy as ‘good children’.
Chulalongkorn University’s commemoration of the 6 October Massacre explored new methods to connect younger generations with the political tragedy, recognising that concepts of human rights and democracy have yet to be firmly established in Thai society. Guest speakers of the commemorative event at Chu