Information Commission demands junta disclose on political prisons

Thailand’s Official Information Commission (OIC) has ruled in favour of human rights lawyers, demanding authorities disclose information about detainees kept in the junta’s notorious political prisons.

The OIC on Friday, 29 July 2016 published a ruling requesting the disclosure of information about a number of detainees and staff at the Remand Facility at the 11th Military Circle on Rama 5 Rd. in Bangkok, Thai Lawyers for Human Rights (TLHR) reported.

The notorious prison is used by the military government to detain suspects accused of national security and political crimes.

The request was submitted to the OIC by the TLHR in June after authorities denied them access to information about the prison on grounds that such information was personal information and could affect national security.

The OIC’s ruling cited in turn Article 35 of the 1997 Official Information Act as the basis of its demand that the Remand Facility disclose information about detainees, former detainees, charges against them and the number of prison staff who are soldiers.

Contrary to Remand Facility’s statement, the OIC ruled that the information requested by TLHR is not personal under Article 4 of the Official Information Act and is not likely to affect national security under Article 15/1 of the Act.

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