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  • Writer's pictureManushya Foundation

Cases of torture and enforced disappearance are on the rise, including pro-democracy protesters!

#WhatsHappeningInThailand 🚨 There is an increasing number of torture and enforced disappearance cases in Thailand in recent years that include pro-democracy protesters, land rights defenders, and political dissidents. Victims and their families only rarely reach a redress and most cases remain unresolved. Help us put pressure on the Thai authorities to finally pass the Prevention and Suppression of Torture and Enforced Disappearance Bill!

🚫 Torture is a common practice especially in the Southern Border Provinces where our partners from Duayjai Group recorded 140 cases of torture of detainees in the hands of security forces since 2010! Torture is also used as a way of extorting bribes by the police - like the shocking video leaked in August showed. In the video, a police officer - Pol Col Thitisan Utthanapon "Joe Ferrari" #ผู้กำกับโจ้ - suffocates a restrained and seated 24-year old drug suspect with a plastic bag while other police officers stand around and watch until he dies!

⚠️ Such cruel and inhumane treatment also doesn't avoid pro-democracy activists and leaders detained because of their participation in the protests. After his detention, activist Parit ‘Penguin’ Chiwarat was beaten up and kept in inhumane conditions where he also contracted COVID-19. He was in a cell together with 43 other inmates!

⚠️ Thai pro-democracy activist in exile Wanchalearm Satsakit disappeared a day after he posted a video online criticizing Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha. He was abducted near his home in Cambodia on 4 June 2020 but neither of the countries conducted a proper investigation!

⚠️ Despite its feeble attempts in the last 10 years, Thailand still hasn't passed the Prevention and Suppression of Torture and Enforced Disappearance Bill. The latest version of the Draft Act was approved on 16 September for review by Thailand’s House of Representatives, and the Ad-Hoc Committee appointed to review started its consideration on 5 October. However, the Draft Act misses several important aspects. For example, definitions of the crimes of 'torture' and 'enforced disappearance' are not fully in line with international human rights standards. The Draft Act also doesn't provide sufficient safeguards against them! As a reminder, Thailand ratified the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT) in 2007 and signed the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance (ICPPED) in 2012, but has yet to ratify it.

🗣️ We call on Thai authorities to strengthen the Draft Act to be in line with international human rights standards and to enact it as soon as possible! If not now, WHEN? We cannot wait any longer! #ItCouldBeYou

📍 In November 2021, Thailand will undergo its 3rd Universal Periodic Review (UPR) — a comprehensive review of its human rights record where it will be held accountable for its human rights violations in front of delegations from the whole world. Each UN Member State, individual country, can make recommendations to Thailand to improve the human rights situation on the ground. The Thai government will accept or note those.

In the last UPR cycle, Thailand received 17 recommendations on enforced disappearance and 30 related to torture but none of them was implemented. The Government must live up to its promises!

✊🏽 To support the initiative, Manushya Foundation has teamed up with the Cross Cultural Foundation (CrCF), Justice for Peace Foundation (JPF), and the Duayjai Group to prepare the UPR Factsheet on Torture and Enforced Disappearance in Thailand and tell the world the truth. #VoicesOfThailand

Share this with your network to ensure the world knows about #WhatsHappeningInThailand!

👉🏼 Access the UPR Advocacy Factsheet on Torture and Enforced Disappearance in Thailand here.

👉🏼 Access all the UPR Advocacy Factsheets on #WhatsHappeningInThailand here.

👉🏼 Learn more about the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) here.





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