The long-promised People’s Information Centre (PIC) report on the Abhisit Vejjajiva government’s 2010 crackdown on red shirts is about to be released. The Nation reports that the PIC “claims there were 94 deaths from all sides.”
Puangthong Pawakapan says that there were “many ‘stray’ deaths, of those who had nothing to do with the protests but were hit by stray bullets.” PPT will wait to see more on this as we can’t help believing that soldiers with scopes and high-powered war weapons are not likely to be shooting like drunks hunting. In fact, “almost 30 per cent of the deaths resulted from bullet wounds on their heads. And if combined with another 22 per cent who died from gunshot wounds on the chest, the figure is above 50 per cent.” That seems pretty clear on shooting to kill particular targets.
PIC also shows that the “death and violence” in May 2010 occurred as soon as the “military operations began from May 14…”. There is mention that military accounts of events make it clear that “the ‘success’ of the military operation [was]… credited to the use of live bullets against protesters.”
On so-called men in black, PIC’s Puangthong says:
there is no clarity as to who they were and even the [Abhisit Vejjajiva] government has failed to trace them. Also, deaths and injuries occurred on the afternoon of April 10, , before the claim by the Abhisit administration and the Centre for the Resolution of Emergency Situation (CRES) that it occurred in the evening [after clashing with 'men in black'].
The [Abhisit] government says those who died were terrorists but in the evidence we gathered, we discover no traces of gunpowder on the hands of any of those killed.
On the deployment of Army snipers, Puangthong makes the obvious point: “There are so many video clips on the Internet showing many soldiers using telescopic guns…. This is no shooting for self-defence [as claimed by the Abhisit government].”
The mastermind, the head of the government, the one who gave orders at the CRES and the person/s who came up with Army strategy. It is the responsibility of those who employed military means to disperse the protest and failed to control it.
Will impunity be overturned and Abhisit, Suthep Thaugsuban and the military brass face courts?