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Council of Ministers of Thailand Ratifies the Convention on Enforced Disappearance and is Ready to Approve the Act on Torture and Enforced Disappearance 

25 May 2016


Council of Ministers of Thailand has ratified the “Convention on Enforced Disappearance” and passed the resolution to approve the “Draft of Act on Torture and Enforced Disappearance” and submitted it to the NLA for consideration. The next step is to see how relevant the contents in such bill are to the international standards.


Maj. Gen. Sansern Kaewkamnerd, Spokesperson for the Office of the Prime Minister revealed that the Council of Ministers of Thailand came to resolution to become a party by ratifying the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance, including approving the draft of Prevention and Suppression of Torture and Enforced Disappearances Act B.E… as proposed by the Ministry of Justice, which will be submitted to the Council of State and the National Legislative Assembly (NLA) for further consideration.


Such affirmative resolution was passed after the Thai government sent a representative to attend the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) in mid-May 2016, while the families of those who were expected to be forced to disappear, such as Lawyer Somchai Neelapaijit (disappeared for 12 years), Billy-Polajee (disappeared for 2 years, Hayeesuhalong Tomeena (disappeared for 63 years), Den Kamlae (disappear for 5 weeks), have been calling for answers and justice from the government.


However, If Thailand ratifies the convention and enforces the aforesaid act, torture by the government officials and enforced disappearance will be liable to criminal punishments and it will result in measures protecting and suppressing torture and enforced disappearance, as well as healing the victims and their family in a more concrete manner.


Amnesty International is one of the groups that have been advocating for legislation of prevention and suppression of torture and enforced disappearance by emphasizing to the government agencies that such law must be in accordance with international conventions and standards.


Let’s encourage the NLA to pass the Prevention and Suppression of Torture and Enforced Disappearances Act according to the international standards and call for justice for the disappearances of Lawyer Somchai and those who are expected to be forced to disappear with us at >