Updated: The emergency decree and continuing the repression

8 12 2010

The Bangkok Post and many other outlets report that there is consideration of lifting the emergency decree. The current three-month implementation of the decree expires on 5 January.

Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva has said that the decree could “well be revoked before the New Year now that the overall situation has improved…”. He quickly added that “it was still necessary for the government to monitor the activities of various groups to ensure there was no incitement to violence.”

Is this a big deal. Well, yes, in the sense that many have called for the lifting of this aspect of a military-backed regime’s headlock on political activism. But not really such a big deal if one considers that the emergency has been in place since April. That’s now 8 months of this repression under a government that repeatedly claims to be democratic and interested in human rights. Of course, it is an authoritarian regime that shows scant regard for any rights. That will continue. And, since the regime has used emergency rule to arrest repress and smash the various elements of red shirt opposition – there remain more than 200 in jail following the arrests that followed the government’s crackdown on red shirts – there is unlikely to be a retraction of the military’s steel claws that strangle opposition.

Abhisit acknowledges this when he says: “The overall situation has improved. I have instructed the secretary-general of the National Security Council (NSC) to lay down measures to cope with the situation after the decree is lifted…”. Remarkably, Abhisit admits repression: “The government does not want to infringe on the rights of the people and does not want to use a special law indefinitely…”. Repression can continue by other means that are strengthened by the rise of the military and the regime’s purging of military, police and bureaucracy.

It is noteworthy that Abhisit made his statement only after Defence Minister General Prawit Wongsuwon, director of the Centre for the Resolution of Emergency Situation, said the emergency decree could be lifted.

Update: The Bangkok Post reports thatthe Centre for the Resolution of Emergency Situations has “agreed to recommend that the cabinet end the enforcement of the emergency decree in Bangkok, Nonthaburi, Samut Prakan and Pathum Thani…”. It was added: “After the decree is lifted, a peace-keeping plan prepared by the Internal Security Operations Command (Isoc) would be implemented to maintain law and order…. If unrest reoccurs, the Internal Security Act would be imposed to enable the deployment of soldiers…”. Welcome to the internal security state.




2 responses

8 12 2010
Tweets that mention The emergency decree and continuing the repression | Political Prisoners in Thailand -- Topsy.com

[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by อิสระภาพ แห่งข่าวสาร, NEWSpace. NEWSpace said: The emergency decree and continuing repression: The Bangkok Post and many other outlets report that there is con… http://bit.ly/gA1x7A […]

15 12 2010
Updated: Reneging on the emergency decree and DSI reports | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] first is the earlier report that the emergency decree in Bangkok and areas close by was going to rescinded after many months. That seems to still be the case. However, the forces of a […]

%d bloggers like this: