NGOs urge the Thai Government and protestors to restrain from violence immediately and renegotiate peaceful solution
|Publisher||International Federation for Human Rights|
|Publication Date||3 May 2010|
|Cite as||International Federation for Human Rights, NGOs urge the Thai Government and protestors to restrain from violence immediately and renegotiate peaceful solution, 3 May 2010, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4bfd1bd728.html [accessed 30 September 2014]|
|Disclaimer||This is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.|
3 May 2010
(Bangkok, 29 April 2010) We, the undersigned human rights NGOs from across Asia, are deeply concerned over the political upheaval in Thailand and condemn the violence that took place in the recent political conflicts. Violent clashes between Thai security forces and protestors of the United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship (UDD) have resulted in 25 deaths (18 civilians, 6 soldiers and one foreign journalist) and more than 800 injured on April 10.
We regret that the violence has continued with more recent deaths (five people) and many more wounded (including foreigners) in a grenade explosion on April 22 in Silom, one of the prime business areas in Bangkok. We fear the worst, as Thai military and police have been authorized by the government's Centre for the Resolution of the Emergency Situation, to use live bullets to disperse the protesters which on the latest incident on April 28 in Vibhavadi Rangsit Road, killed one soldier and wounded 18 people.
We strongly urge the Thai government and the UDD protestors to exercise extreme restraint from violence and to return to the negotiation table to find a peaceful political solution to the conflicts. The government of Thailand, in particular, must ensure that any crowd dispersal methods are in line with international principles as outlined in Principle 14 of the Basic Principles on the Use of Force and Firearms. Any disproportionate use of force by the security forces against demonstrators is deemed deplorable.
We further urge the Thai government and the UDD to work towards national reconciliation for the sake of the common people of Thailand.
We also urge the government of Thailand to immediately establish an independent commission to investigate the incidents and hold the perpetrators of violence accountable, regardless of their political affiliation as news reports and eye witness accounts have provided conflicting information on how these violent incidents occurred and the types of weapons and ammunition used in the conflict.
We welcome the establishment of a sub-committee by the National Human Rights Commission of Thailand to conduct an inquiry on the violation of human rights during the political crisis. We stress that the inquiry should be conducted in an independent, transparent and professional manner. This sub-committee should focus on investigating the facts surrounding the grave human rights abuses that have occurred since April 10, with clear conclusive evidence of who the perpetrators are.
We are extremely concerned that the closing down of more than 10 satellite and cable television stations and 36 internet websites has done more harm than good for the democratic transition and development in Thailand and may not be required by the exigencies of the emergency situation. If there is indeed hate speech perpetuated by certain media, charges can be brought against the media in a court of law, banning is not a solution. We call for the ban on the media to be lifted immediately.
As a party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), we wish to remind the government that while derogation of certain rights may be allowed during times of public and officially declared emergency, the measures of restricting rights should be taken only in the manner that is strictly required by the exigencies of the situation during the declaration of emergency and should not be inconsistent with other obligations under international law.
However, there are rights that are non-derogable, even in times of emergency. These rights include, among others, the right to life and the right to be free from torture, cruel, inhumane and degrading treatments or punishments. The Thai government is obliged to take all measures to prevent the violations of these non-derogable rights.
The human rights record of Thailand will be examined by the UN Human Rights Council under the Universal Periodic Review in 2011. We call on the Thai government to continue to observe its obligations under international human rights law in these difficult times.
We hope for better solution through peaceful and lawful means and dialogue and express our wish to see progress, peace and solidarity in Thai citizen's daily life. Human Rights Principle accepts no other means than internationally accepted norms and values of Law.
1. Ain O Salish Kendra (ASK), Bangladesh
2. ALTSEAN BURMA, Thailand
3. Asian Centre For Human Rights, India
4. Asian Forum For Human Rights And Development (FORUM-ASIA)
5. Burma Partnership, Burma-Thailand Border
6. Burma Centre – Delhi, India
7. Cambodian Human Rights And Development Association (ADHOC), Cambodia
8. Center For Human Rights And Development (CHRD), Mongolia
9. Commission For The Disappeared And Victims Of Violence (Kontras), Indonesia
10. Dignity International
11. Forum For Protection Of People's Rights (PPR), Nepal
12. Foundation For Media Alternatives (FMA), The Philippines
13. Global Partnership For The Prevention Of Armed Conflict -Southeast Asia And Asia-Pacific Solidarity Coalition, The Philippines
14. Human Rights Working Group (HRWG), Indonesia
15. Human Security Alliance (HSA), Nepal
16. Imparsial, Indonesia
17. Indonesian Solidarity, Australia
18. Informal Sector Service Center, Nepal
19. Indigenous Peoples Rights Monitor, The Philippines
20. Initiatives For International Dialogue, The Philippines
21. International NGO Forum On Indonesian Development (INFID), Indonesia
22. Indonesian Corruption Watch, Indonesia
23. Korean House For International Solidarity, South Korea
24. Migrant CARE, Indonesia
25. Migrant Forum In Asia, The Philippines
26. Nonviolence International Southeast Asia, Thailand
27. Odhikar, Bangladesh
28. Ovibashi Karmi Unnayan Program (OKUP), Bangladesh
29. People Empowerment, Thailand
30. Peoples Vigilance Committee For Human Rights (PVCHR), India
31. People's Solidarity For Participatory Democracy (PSPD), South Korea
32. Southeast Asian Press Alliance (SEAPA), Thailand
33. Southeast Asia Coalition To Stop The Use Of Child Soldiers (SEASUCS), The Philippines
34. Student Federation Of Thailand
35. Task Force Detainees Of The Philippine (TFDP), The Philippines
36. Taiwan Association For Human Rights, Taiwan
37. The Asian Federation Against Involuntary Disappearances (AFAD), The Philippines
38. The International Federation For Human Rights (FIDH)
39. Think Centre, Singapore
40. Tibetan UN Advocacy, Switzerland
41. Working Group On Justice and Peace, Thailand
42. Yayasan Sekretariat Anak Merdeka (SAMIN), Indonesia
43. Young Progressives For Social Democracy (YPD), Thailand