Walking on bodies to power

19 04 2012

At the Bangkok Post a few days ago there was a story worth mentioning as it refers to red shirts involved in a dispute with the ruling party and authorities, as well as their own lawyers from the 111 Thai Rak Thai Foundation.

It is reported that foundation has filed suits for damages of 130 million baht “against the Finance Ministry, Defence Ministry, the army, former prime minister Abhisit Vejjajiva and former deputy prime minister Suthep Thaugsuban.”

Apparently, the Civil Court had

set March 30 to settle the damage and reparation lawsuits filed against the Abhisit Vejjajiva administration and Finance Ministry by injured United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship supporters and relatives of the dead. However, their lawyers have asked for the case to be put back to September.

A woman who lost her younger brother during the 10 April 2010 crackdown by government forces says:

It’s already been two years without progress on either establishing the facts of my brother’s death or the compensation. Sometimes I feel hurt, thinking that the government just stepped over their corpses to obtain power.

The ruling Puea Thai Party had, when in opposition, “used her brother’s death in its calls for the Democrat [Party]-led government to take responsibility…”.

Another, who lost an eye, stated:

The current government’s reparation scheme is under way but without any explicit timeframe or form of payment. We seem to be left shattered, having to wait directionless under the administration we helped to install….

The “red shirt rank and file were stunned by the 111 Thai Rak Thai Foundation’s move. The victims did not know if the lawyers would later ask for the civil lawsuits to be dropped, or if they would still proceed.” Several others have launched their own cases.

Some feel they are being abandoned by the party they supported and brought to power. As an example of abandonment, “relatives of 20 red shirt protesters who were killed at Kok Wua intersection held a separate commemoration at Democracy Monument,” and many were “appalled that the government did a no-show at the ceremony.”

A mother whose son was killed observed that Puea Thai has gone quiet while it is the Democrat Party and “relatives of the soldiers have come forward to talk about the deaths. It is a very weird situation…”.

“Weird” is probably a polite way of referring to this situation.


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19 04 2012



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