Dienstag, 27. Mai 2014

About the coup in Thailand

23. May 2014, Monument of Democracy, Bangkok

Dear readers,
because of the current situation in Thailand I will refrain from posting any political comments or statements about recent or upcoming developments for the time being (for the safety of my family and my friends). During the last days Thailand has changed from a democracy (with all it's flaws) into a dictatorial regime led by a military junta. I live in Thailand for 12 years by now but I never experienced such a climate of fear, hate and oppression like nowadays, not even after the coup in 2006.

the coup-leaders

The text in the picture behind the generals reads (quoting a speech of King Rama V):
๑. ทหาร คือ ผู้ที่ได้รับเกียรติอย่างสูงจากประชาชนทั้งชาติ ให้เป็นสุภาพบุรุษ ถืออาวุธป้องกันประเทศ
๒. ทหาร เป็นผู้เสียสละประโยชน์สุขส่วนตัว เพื่อความผาสุกของประชาชนและความอยู่รอดของชาติ
๓. ทหาร คือ ผู้ที่รักและบูชาเกียรติยศมากกว่าเงิน”

The honor of soldiers:
Soldiers are people, who are granted the honor by the people of a nation, to take up arms and defend their country like gentlemen.
Soldiers are people who care more for the welfare of the people and the presence of the nation as for their own welfare.
Soldiers are people who love and revere honor more than money.

Yesterday our new "leader" General Prayuth Chan-ocha declared that everyone (including foreigners and foreign media), who dare to criticize the junta and/or their politics/or actions will be court-martialled. You won't be allowed a lawyer or to defend yourself. The sentences would be comparable with the punishment under article 112 (lese majeste law): 3 - 5 years imprisonment for each offense.

Many of our dear Thai colleagues and friends have already been summoned to report to the regime and were threatened not to talk to (foreign) journalists or to criticize the junta or to publish any negative news about the new regime. If they do otherwise, they will be arrested by the military and detained in military prison camps. There had been already night raids by the army, friends got detained, their homes searched and computers and other media confiscated. See order 37 below.


National Peace and Order Maintenance Council Announcement No. 37/2557 [Unofficial translation]

National Peace and Order Maintenance Council (NPOMC) Announcement No. 37/2557 [2014] Offences Under the Power of the Military Court to Examine and Decide

The NPOMC therefore proclaims that all cases of wrongdoing specified below that are committed in the Kingdom and while this order is in force will be examined in military court.

1. Offences under the Criminal Code (1) Offences against the King, Queen, Heir-apparent or Regent, from Article 107 to Article 112 (2) Offences against the internal security of the kingdom, from Article 113 to 118, excluding offences that occur in areas in which the 2008 Internal Security Act is in Force or the 2005 Emergency Decree on Public Administration.

2. Offences against the announcements or orders of the National Peace and Order Maintenance Council.

This comes into force from now until there is a transformation.

25 May 2014

Also gatherings of more than 5 people are strictly forbidden but nevertheless hundreds, sometimes thousands of people protested all over the country against the dictatorial regime. Therefor the junta announced yesterday that everybody who takes part in a protest against the coup will be arrested and court-martialled. This applies to journalists and bystanders (foreigners also), too!

If you are in Thailand please be careful when you shoot pictures during demonstrations. Two days ago (25.05.2014) a military officer approached us near the victory monument in Bangkok and forced us to delete all images we've taken with our cameras and smartphones. If we would have dared to refuse, our cameras and phones would have been confiscated.

For all those reasons mentioned above I will post only images without comments or statements. I think the photos will speak for themselves.  Place and date will be the only information I will give (until the situation will change for the better)!

Thanx for your understanding and hope to see you soon in a better Thailand.

At the Monument of Democracy

23.05.2014 (one day after the coup)

At Pathumwan, near the MBK/BACC

23. May 2014 (evening)

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