ASEAN and protecting Thailand’s royals

25 07 2009

During the ASEAN meetings held with extreme security measures taken, it was reported in The Nation (21 July 2009: “Body ‘A necessary start'”) that when the body’s new human rights commission was being challenged for its lack of power to take action against rights violations in member countries. lese majeste was raised.

Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya, who chaired the Asean Ministerial Meeting, was defending the commission when a journalist from Indonesia asking Kasit “what the commission would do about the criticism of the Thai monarchy.”

Kasit replied that “Thailand has a constitutional-monarchy system that keeps the monarchy and especially the personality of His Majesty the King above politics.” He advised: “Don’t mix it up, there are certain quarters in society that would like to bring the institution of the monarchy down into the political fight inside Thailand…” .

He went on to explain, “The royal institution and HM the King have no protection when they’re being attacked. We have to have a law to protect the institution. The lese-majeste law is simply there to protect the institution of monarchy because they cannot protect themselves. The King cannot go to court…”. Adding to this, he opined: “What we have in Thailand is similar to what a lot of countries have with the institution of monarchy.” …

There’s no need for PPT to point out Kasit’s errors in this statement which the current Democrat Party-led government regularly trots out for foreigners. However, it is clear that, for all the talk of Burma and human rights, Thailand’s doesn’t want an ASEAN human rights body that could raise questions about lese majeste and the way it is used to infringe on individual rights.



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26 07 2009
อาเซียน และการปกป้องราชวงศ์ไทย « Liberal Thai

[…] protecting Thailand’s royals ๒๕ กรกฏาคม ๒๕๕๒ ที่มา – Political Prisoners in Thailand แปลและเรียบเรียง – chapter […]

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