Still No End to Repression on Coup Anniversary

23 May 2016


As Thailand marks two years since the military took over, Amnesty International is concerned to note persistent human rights violations, in particular arbitrary and increasing restrictions on peaceful dissent. We are also concerned that there have been no signs that authorities plan to lift restrictions on the peaceful exercise of freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly, which authorities originally promised as temporary when they took power in a military coup.


The organization is further alarmed for the future of peaceful exercise of the right to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly in Thailand as authorities continue to pass and draft laws that pose an immediate and long-term threat to the enjoyment of these rights in the country.


Since the coup, and particularly during the last year, authorities have also continued to expand military involvement in the administration of justice – including by subjecting civilians to trial in military courts and detaining them in military detention facilities - to detain and prosecute individuals for acts that are not crimes under international law.


Amnesty International urges authorities to stop entrenching their powers to arbitrarily restrict the peaceful exercise of the right to freedom of expression and assembly, including online.


Provisions in the draft revisions to the Computer Crimes Act and proposed draft cybersecurity legislation run counter to Thailand’s national and international obligations to safeguard the right to freedom of expression and the right to privacy, and would legalize censorship and surveillance in the name of national security beyond the requirements set out in international law, including strict tests of necessity and


The organization also urges members of the international community to put meaningful pressure on authorities to ensure that Thailand does not pass another year marking further repression of peaceful dissent, trials of civilians in military courts, and use of military powers to arbitrarily detain individualsincluding in military facilities.