Junta accuses red shirt leaders of violating ban on political gatherings

A prominent legal officer of the junta’s National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) has accused leaders of the anti-establishment red shirts of violating the junta’s ban on political gatherings by opening a now-banned referendum watch centre.

The Crime Suppression Division (CSD) of the Royal Thai Police on Monday, 20 June 2016, issued summonses to Jatuporn Prompan, Secretary-General of the United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD), the main red-shirt faction affiliated with Thaksin Shinawatra, and other UDD leaders to report to the CSD in Bangkok on 30 June 2016, reported Anon Nampa, a human rights lawyer.

In the summons, Col Burin Thongprapai, a legal officer of the junta known for filing complaints against anti-junta activists and other political dissidents, accused the UDD leaders of violating the NCPO Head’s Order No. 3/2015, a ban on political gatherings of five or more persons.   

The warrants were issued one day after the authorities stormed into the broadcasting station of TV 24 or Peace TV in Lat Phrao District, Bangkok, a TV station affiliated with the UDD, and barred UDD leaders from broadcasting a ceremony to open the UDD referendum watch centres to monitor the upcoming referendum countrywide.

Similarly, police from Ban Pong District Police Station in Ratchaburi Province on Monday issued warrants summoning Boribun Kiangwarangkun and at least 10 other red shirts to report to the police station.

In the summonses, Boribun and the others are accused of participating in a political gathering without permission from the junta after they gathered on Sunday at the local referendum watch centre of the UDD.

If found guilty for violating the junta’s political gathering ban, the red-shirt leaders and members could face up to one year in prison, a 20,000 baht fine, or both.

h.

Military and police officers request key leaders of the United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship (UDD) to halt the briefing to open a centre to monitor the public referendum on the draft constitution on 5 June 2016

Advertisements

Since 2007, Prachatai English has been covering underreported issues in Thailand, especially about democratization and human rights, despite the risk and pressure from the law and the authorities. However, with only 2 full-time reporters and increasing annual operating costs, keeping our work going is a challenge. Your support will ensure we stay a professional media source and be able to expand our team to meet the challenges and deliver timely and in-depth reporting.

• Simple steps to support Prachatai English

1. Bank transfer to account “โครงการหนังสือพิมพ์อินเทอร์เน็ต ประชาไท” or “Prachatai Online Newspaper” 091-0-21689-4, Krungthai Bank

2. Or, Transfer money via Paypal, to e-mail address: service@prachatai.com, please leave a comment on the transaction as “For Prachatai English”