Torture, enforced disappearance and the military

30 08 2012

The Asian Human Right Commission has two statements/appeals that relate to Thailand and both involve state impunity, torture and forced disappearances.

The first instance of torture is deserving of reading in full. However, the introduction by AHRC says much:

The Asian Human Rights Commission is deeply concerned about a recent case of torture in the south of Thailand. Romuelee Loh-oh, 21, was arrested under unclear circumstances, tortured and repeatedly interrogated under inhumane conditions. His family was subject to repeated, intimidating searches of their home. This case is indicative of the entrenched practices of torture currently in use by the Thai state security forces that have developed and hardened into place since the declaration of martial law over the country’s south in January 2004. These practices terrorize individual citizens and families, fail to stem the widespread violence and further engender mistrust of the authorities by the citizens.

The second statement is about enforced disappearance on the International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances:

Today, August 30th, is the International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances. The International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearances defines enforced disappearances as: “… the arrest, detention, abduction or any other form of deprivation of liberty by agents of the State or by persons or groups of persons acting with the authorisation, support or acquiescence of the State, followed by a refusal to acknowledge the deprivation of liberty or by concealment of the fate or whereabouts of the disappeared person, which place such a person outside the protection of the law.”

On Thailand, AHRC circulates a statement from the Justice for Peace Foundation and the Asian Federation against Involuntary Disappearances which begins by commending “the Thai government for signing the International Convention for the Protection of all Persons from Enforced Disappearance in January this year.” The extent of this state crime in Thailand is provided in statistics for 2011: “JPF has documented 40 incidents of enforced disappearances involving 59 people. 12 people were from northern Thailand, five from the west, seven from Isaan (north east) and 33 from the Deep south…”.

The statement lists those most likely to be “disappeared”: “(i) people with close relationships with officials and /or come into conflict with officials; (ii) activists engaged in human rights, political or corruption activism; (iii) witnesses of crimes or human rights violations; and (iv) migrants.” It adds that in “all of the cases, the right to truth and the right to justice for enforced disappearances remain largely denied by the state in Thailand.”


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24 04 2014
Updated: Impunity and violence | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] The disappearance of “Porchalee Rakchongcharoen, an ethnic Karen also known as “Billy,” is involved in a lawsuit that accuses Kaeng Krachan Park authorities of damaging the property and homes of more than 20 Karen families living inside the park” again raises questions about state officials solving “problems” by enforced disappearance. […]

24 04 2014
Updated: Impunity and violence | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] The disappearance of “Porchalee Rakchongcharoen, an ethnic Karen also known as “Billy,” is involved in a lawsuit that accuses Kaeng Krachan Park authorities of damaging the property and homes of more than 20 Karen families living inside the park” again raises questions about state officials solving “problems” by enforced disappearance. […]

7 08 2014
Should anyone believe the military? | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] the south, the use of torture is routine. Not that long ago, this was reported from the […]

4 09 2019
Murder, impunity | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] living inside the park, suggesting that state officials were (again) solving “problems” by enforced disappearance. (We have seen this again recently with the murder and disappearance of several anti-monarchy […]




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