The junta at ASEM Summit

24 10 2018

We missed a couple of important things over the past couple of weeks and thank the readers who brought them to PPT’s attention.

The first is produced here in full:

Donald TUSK President of the European Council

Antonio Tajani President of the European Parliament

Lee Hsien Loong Chair of ASEAN

Dato Lim Jock Hoi Secretary-General of ASEAN

Angela Merkel Chancellor of Germany

28 September 2018

Your Excellencies,

The 12th ASEM Summit in Brussels (18-19 October) will be attended by General Prayuth Chan-Ocha who, as Commander-in-Chief of the Royal Thai Army, led the military coup that terminated the democratically elected Government of Thailand in 2014 (the 12th military coup against democracy since the abolition of Absolute Monarchy in 1932.)

From 22 May 2014 the population of Thailand has been forced to live under the oppression of General Prayuth’s military junta – his ‘National Council for Peace and Order’ (NCPO).

In Article 44 of his 2015 so-called Interim Constitution, Prayuth granted himself supreme power and immunity from prosecution – also immunity to all who had played a part in his military coup.

The 2017 Constitution produced by his completely non-elect NCPO has ruled that Thailand’s future Upper House shall be comprised of 250 ‘senators’ (appointed by an NCPO-appointed NCPO committee) and have the right to appoint the Prime Minister, thereby ensuring that the workings of any future Lower House, elected or otherwise, can be blocked.

For the last 4 years the Prayuth junta has been doing all it can to squash all opposition through the issuance of more than 500 unlawful, totalitarian orders and edicts, through the banning of political meetings and assemblies, and through detention and life-threatening harassment of many hundreds of civil society leaders, politicians, academics and students.

Alongside Article 44 of the junta’s 2017 Constitution, the junta has employed Article 116 of the Thai Criminal Code, which covers ‘threats to national security’, and the stand-alone but junta-amended Computer Crime Act to crack-down ruthlessly on Freedom of Speech and Freedom of Assembly.

All these orders, edicts and articles have been and are being used by Prayuth to block and persecute public debate on the future of Thailand and to postpone free and fair elections and the return to parliamentary democracy ad infinitum. Prayuth’s junta has also taken ruthless advantage of Thailand’s anachronous and infamous lèse-majesté laws (Article 112 of the Criminal Code), using military courts to convict record numbers of people on trumped-up charges of lèse-majesté with sentences reaching 70 years of imprisonment.

Since 2014 the junta has claimed the right to send soldiers and police into people’s homes (usually 10 -12 armed personnel) without warning or warrant, to detain citizens and remove them to military bases for so-called ‘attitude adjustment’.

After four years without democracy the suppressive and oppressive policies of the Prayuth regime have been able to penetrate and impact upon every corner of the Kingdom, leaving the regular citizenry in a state of humiliating despair with regard to the political future of their country.

Not only is the Prayuth regime undermining the health and well-being of Thailand, his regime weakens the ability of the ASEAN to serve the ASEAN Community. It is thus of central importance to all parties to recognise and not abandon recognition of the fact that the Prayuth regime is not a legitimate government.

We request that the EU and Member States do not abandon recognition of the illegitimacy of General Prayuth’s attempt to represent the people of Thailand and the illegitimacy of the regime he is attempting to establish.

We request that the EU and member states do not entertain negotiating with Prayuth on any matter other than that of the removal his junta and armed forces from all forms of interference in the democratic development of Thailand.

With greatest respect

Name organisation/party

Judy A. Pasimio LILAK (Purple Action for Indigenous Women’s Right) Philippines

Atama Katama Vorned Dayak Forum International, Malaysia

Marthin Hadininata Kesatuan Nelayan Tradisional Indonesia

Glomis Balangne IBON Europe (Belgium)

Rayyan Hassan NGO Forum on ADB (Asia Region, Philippines, Bangladesh, Cambodia, India)

Pierre Rousset ESSF (France)

Tom Kuchrz Podemos, Spain

Balram Banskota NCP, Nepal

May Wong Globalisation Monitor(HKSAR)

Anselmo Lee ADN, Asia Democracy Network, Korea

Junya Yimprasert Action for People’s Democracy, Thailand

Tur-od Lkhagvaja Transparency Int., Malaysia


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