The continuing hunt for Red Shirts

17 06 2009

The Bangkok Post (16 June 2009: “Arrest warrants for red-shirt leaders”) reports that the relentless hunt for red shirt leaders continues.

It is reported that the “Criminal Court has approved arrest warrants for eight more leaders of the red-shirt protest movement, including a police lieutenant colonel, on charges of illegal assembly and instigating unrest” during the Songkhran Uprising.

Senior police have apparently “presented evidence to support the application to the court” that includes “tapes of speeches made by leaders of the red shirts on April 13 at Chamai Maruchet bridge.”

The eight suspects are said to be: Wiphuthalaeng Pattanaphumthai, Suporn Atthawong, Surachai Danwatananusorn, Somchai Paiboon, Pol Lt-Col Waipot Arpornrat, Payap Panket, Methi Amornwuthikul and Pichet Sukchindathong.

The police call on the suspects to surrender to fight the charges.

The report states that the police had earlier issued a warrants for the arrest of 14 leaders of the United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD) and that 12 of these later surrendered to police. The two who had not surrendered were Thaksin Shinawatra and Jakrapob Penkair.

In fact, PPT is not sure that this is correct. Readers can go back through our posts and will find that far more red shirt leaders than this were arrested, including in places like Chiang Mai. Earlier, the government had claimed that 10 red shirt leaders had fled the country. If any reader has an accurate count of UDD arrests and/or charges, please let PPT know.

PPT again points to the failure of the Democrat Party-led government to seriously pursue any charges against the yellow-shirted, royalist, anti-Thaksin and Democrat Party supported PAD.



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