Thai police ban Andrew Marshall’s book on Thai monarchy

Thai police on Wednesday banned “A Kingdom in Crisis,” written by embattled former Reuters journalist Andrew McGregor Marshall due to lèse majesté.

‘A Kingdom Crisis: Thailand’s Struggle for Democracy in the Twenty-First Century’ is written by Marshall, the author of ‘Zen Journalist’, a controversial blog on Thailand’s socio-political issues. The book talks about Thailand’s deep political divide between the pro-establishment yellow shirts and anti-establishment red shirts, including references to the revered Thai monarchy. It also discusses the succession in terms of the anxiety it creates for Thai royalists.

The announcement to ban the book was published in the Royal Gazette on Wednesday. The police claimed that based on book reviews published in the South China Morning Post on 4 October and in the Independent on 8 October, the book contains material defaming the Thai monarchy.

The announcement was based on the 2007 Publishing Act, which allows the police to ban any book from the Kingdom if the book is found to defame the King. Those who distribute or carry the book can receive up to three years’ jail term and a fine of 60,000 baht (1,827 USD).

Marshall’s blog has been blocked by the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology because of alleged lèse majesté content.

The reviews of ‘A Kingdom in Crisis’ in the South China Morning Post and the Independent were written by David Eimer and Andrew Buncombe respectively.

The cover of A Kingodm in Crisis by Andrew MacGregor Marshall