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A likely scenario for Thailand

12/01/2014

Amnesty International has commented below on the Thai political situation and the violent protests. But whatever happens, the current indicators are that there will be no military coup. The 2006 coup was an economic disaster for the country and would unlikely be repeated in the same form, .Lessons learned and the international reaction might have favoured a judicial coup and the appointment of appointed but unelected experts. That is broadly Suthep’s plan and was also a startegy proposed by Patik Siam in November 2012 

If there are reasons for not having an army coup, then a judicial decision would achieve the same result.  In September 2008 the then PM, Samak, had to resign as he had hosted a cooking show while holding prime ministerial office.

Delayed elections or a government with no real power are likely scenarios, with effective government being in the hands of appointees.  

“Amnesty International has also urged all protest leaders to call on their followers not to commit human rights abuses. Protesters have announced plans to stage mass demonstrations and shut down government offices until the current government steps down.

 

“The government has deployed some 15,000 military and police to the capital. “The situation in Thailand is tense, volatile and unpredictable.

 

“There is a real risk of loss of life and injury unless human rights are fully respected,” said Isabelle Arradon, Amnesty International’s Asia-Pacific Deputy Director. “Security forces should ensure that the right to peaceful protest is upheld; however, they also have a duty to protect the safety of the public.

 

“When carrying out their work, law enforcement officials should apply non-violent means before resorting to the use of force, and always exercise restraints in its use.” “The authorities must also uphold peaceful exercise of the right to freedom of expression by protecting media workers from harassment and intimidation.” Protests have escalated in Thailand since parliament passed a controversial amnesty bill in November 2013, which was subsequently rejected.

 

“The opposition has announced it will boycott snap elections on February 2, called by Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra.

 

“At least eight people have reportedly been killed and scores injured during the protests, which started in November 2013. In the most recent incident on January 10, four people were reportedly injured when clashes broke out between pro- and anti-government groups in Pathum Thani province, just north of Bangkok.

 

“Amnesty International has called for a full, thorough, independent investigation into all incidents which resulted in injuries and deaths.

 

“Where sufficient and admissible evidence is obtained, suspected perpetrators should be prosecuted. “It is crucial that authorities ensure redress for these deaths, and accountability for past abuses in Thailand, which have led to loss of life or serious harm,” said Isabelle Arradon.”

 

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