Chanoknan Ruamsap

Chanoknan Ruamsap, also known as Cartoon or Toon, is an anti-junta activist with the New Democracy Movement. On 16 January 2018 she received a summons to “meet” police at Khan Na Yao Police Station, in Bangkok, on 18 January. She was accused of lese majeste and before that scheduled meeting, she fled Thailand into exile.

She is accused of being one of the thousands who shared BBC Thai’s accurate profile of the new King Vajiralongkorn in early December 2016. Before her summons, onlyactivist  Jatuphat Boonpattaraksa was the only one arrested and charged with lese majeste and sentenced to 5 years jail on 15 August 2017.

It is no accident that she is the second person of the almost 3000 who shared the profile to be charged with lese majeste and that both are anti-junta activists.

Chanoknan was in junta sites almost immediately when she shared the profile on her Facebook page on 3 December 2016. She believes the long delay was due to the “inefficiencies” of the police, but come for her they did.

Chanoknan was also one of six key members of the NDM who were arrested in late 2015 for organizing a field trip to Rajabhakti Park (or the military’s Corruption Park). She was also arrested on 24 June 2016 for commemorating the first efforts at democracy in Thailand when the absolute monarchy was removed.

It was later revealed that she was in South Korea, seeking refugee status. In November 2018, her application was granted.

Media accounts of Chanoknan’s case:

Khaosod, 12 November 2018: “South Korea Grants Political Asylum to Thai Charged With 112

Hankyoreh 21, 7 June 2018: “Will Korea embrace political refugees from Thailand’s relentless military junta?

Prachatai, 30 January 2018: “An account of exile

Bangkok Post, 29 January 2018: “Activist Chanoknan flees lese majeste summons

Prachatai, 28 January 2018: “Another activist faces lèse majesté charge for sharing BBC news on Thai King

Prachatai, 8 December 2016: “Another democracy activist threatened with lèse majesté law