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Security law violators targeted

Posted by pakin On May - 26 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

Court martial threat to lese majeste offenders

The National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) is hardening its stance on violators of lese majeste and national security laws as well as those who breach the junta’s standing orders.

In its 37th announcement Sunday, the NCPO said violators of the Criminal Code’s Sections 107-112 and 113-118 would be subject to court-martial proceedings.

Those who defy the junta’s orders would also suffer the same fate, the NCPO warned.

The measure will not cover legal violations committed during the invocation of the 2008 Internal Security Act and the 2005 Emergency Decree, it said.

The statement, signed by NCPO and army chief Prayuth Chan-ocha, took immediate effect.

Sections 107-112 deal with lese majeste offences against the royal family and representatives appointed by His Majesty the King. Sections 113-118 cover the broad subject of “national security”.

Gen Prayuth had earlier warned anyone making offensive remarks against the monarchy to immediately cease their actions.

In recent years, calls had been made for the Information and Communication Technology Ministry and security agencies to take action against violators of lese majeste law and websites which contain offensive comments about the monarchy.

However, the problem has not been seriously addressed. (Story continues below)

According to a statement posted on www.ilaw.or.th, the website of Law Education for People, it is unusual for civilians to be tried in courts martial, as defendants are given no right to appoint a lawyer or to file a suit with the court. Their case must be handed over to military prosecutors to act as their legal representatives.

The website said that if the military court is expected to deliver justice, the fact that defenders cannot appoint their own legal representative might make them feel as though they are being treated unfairly.

Meanwhile, a royal command formally appointing Gen Prayuth as leader of the NCPO will be issued Monday, according to Lt Gen Panuwat Nakwong, an assistant to the army chief of staff.

A member of the public offers drinking water to a soldier on security duty at the protest site.

He said Gen Prayuth is expected to receive the royal command Monday morning and would make a public address to the nation after that.

He said the address is expected to outline plans for the introduction of an interim constitution, the appointment of a new government, and the setting up of the national legislative assembly and political reform body.

Meanwhile, the NCPO says it will begin handing over to law enforcement authorities today a group of individuals detained by coup-makers who face criminal charges.

None of the figures summoned to report to the NCPO will be detained for more than the maximum seven days allowed under martial law, and the timing of their release will depend on their role in the political conflict, it said.

He was reading a statement from Gen Prayuth clarifying the political developments in recent days, during which time some 200 prominent political figures have been summoned to report to the coup-makers.

According to Col Winthai, none of the detainees have been tortured or mistreated and they are being kept in suitable accommodationhttp://cdncache-a.akamaihd.net/items/it/img/arrow-10x10.png. They have been asked to explain their side of story as the NCPO seeks to establish facts about the current situation.

“We have informed them of the need to cooperate to help solve the country’s problems,” Col Winthai quoted Gen Prayuth as saying.

“Please be informed that it does not stem from hatred or personal opinions.” According to Col Winthai, searches and raids of suspicious locations will continue after large weapons hauls were seized over the past week.

The NCPO spokesman also clarified the alleged detention of Panthongtae Shinawatra, son of the fugitive ex-prime minister Thaksin, after pictures of Mr Panthongtae being escorted by troops were circulated via social media networks on Friday night.

He said Mr Panthongtae was not in military custody. After “a talk to fine-tune understanding”, Mr Panthongtae was escorted from Chiang Mai to his home in Bangkok as per his wishes, Col Winthai said.

Pravit Rojanaphruk, a senior reporter of The Nation newspaper and a columnist for Prachatai website, and Paiwong Techanarong, owner of the Bonanza Khao Yai Resorthttp://cdncache-a.akamaihd.net/items/it/img/arrow-10x10.png, summoned by the NCPO turned up at the Royal Thai Army auditorium Monday.

The Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Thailand expressed deep concerns over the detention of Mr Pravit and Thanapol Eawsakul, the editor of Fah Diew Gan magazine.

“While this may impede coverage in the short term–and make it harder for journalists on the ground to produce accurate, balanced reports–it will not diminish interest in this story or make it go away,” warned the FCCT.

Martial court enforced: NCPO

Posted by pakin On May - 25 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

The National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) decided on Sunday to use a martial court to prosecute offenders in another move to reinforce its control over the political situation as more protests against the coup took place in Bangkok.

The NCPO announcement pinpointed those subject to the martial court. They are people committing crimes, facing lese majeste charges, creating security threats and defying its orders.

The coup allows judicial courts to function but wrongdoers in the cases it mentioned will be taken to the martial court, the announcement said.

Its decision is aimed at keeping the situation under firm control following army chief Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha’s coup on Thursday.

It was mainly aimed at those ignoring orders, a source said.

Politicians, academics and officials from the deposed government, political parties and two rivals — the United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship and the People’s Democratic Reform Committee — have been summoned by the coup makers. Among them is former prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra.

Pheu Thai Party leader Jarupong Ruangsuwan and former education minister Jaturon Chaisaeng, who are on the list, have not reported, claiming lack of legitimacy by Gen Prayuth to declare a coup.

Council spokesman Col Winthai Suwaree said the two would face action after having been warned.

The coup bans gatherings of more than five people for political purposes.po

But protests against the military seizure continued for the third day, this time at Amarin Plaza near Ratchaprasong intersection and at the Victory Monument on Sunday.

The new order means people on the summons list could see themselves in the martial court if they fail to report to the coup makers.

At Ratchaprasong, about 1,000 protesters gathered at Amarin Plaza to voice opposition to the coup, according to aPost Today photographer at the scene.

A battalion of soldiers was deployed at the shopping centre and another group was put on the skywalk, he said. A group of police officers were stationed in the area as well.

Soldiers and police did not use force against the demonstrators who faced a counter protest by coup supporters.

The demonstrators blocked traffic and threw water bottles into a car, banging the car to prevent it from leaving the area.

A woman who identified herself only as Porntipa, or Fah, whistled at the crowd and exchanged heated words before being whisked away by police to an ambulance.

A few cameramen and police received minor injuries.

At least two protesters were taken away by the troops, one bleeding, according to AFP.

“I am not afraid of them because the more we are afraid of them, the more they will stamp on us,” protester Kongjit Paennoy, 50, told AFP. “We want an election — to choose our own boss.”

The group then moved on to Victory Monument.

Col Winthai said the coup makers will use both soft and strong measures to handle protesters and the council will try to explain to them the need for the armed forces to seize power.

Farmers to be paid from tomorrow

Posted by pakin On May - 25 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

The National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) has instructed the Finance Ministry and Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives to give about 92 billion baht to more than 800,000 farmers who have not been paid for their rice under the previous government’s rice-pledging scheme in one month from tomorrow, Col Nathawat Chancharoen, NCPO deputy spokesman, said on Sunday.

Col Nathawat was speaking after a meeting of the NCPO’s economic affairs section under the supervision of ACM Prajin Jantong, the air force chief, with economic agencies concerned.

The most urgent economic issue raised for discussion was the outstanding payment to be made to farmers who have mortgaged rice with the government but have not been paid, he said.

Col Nathawat said the farmers would initially be paid with about 40 billion baht available from the Commerce Ministry and later with another 50 billion baht to be acquired on loans from a financial institution inside the country.

The 800,000 farmers would all be paid in one month starting tomorrow. The money would be paid at various army and air force units in various parts of the country, he said.

Somchart Soithong, director-general of the Internal Trade Department, quoted ACM Prajin as saying that the Finance Ministry would be responsible for the loan repayment.

ACM Prajin also wanted all agencies concerned to take measures to quickly solve the problem of the low price of rice, he said.

Mr Somchart said the meeting also discussed a plan for the NCPO to prepare the 2015 national expenditure budget to be disbursed from Oct 1.

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