Thailand: Activists Welcome Thai Decision to Drop Charges Against Rights Report Author

March 8, 2017

Thailand, featuring the cities of Bangkok, Mueang, Nonthaburi, Udon Thani, Chon Buri, Nakhon Ratchasima, Chiang Mai, Hat Yai, Pak Kret, and Si Racha

Rights activists and groups are welcoming a Thai government decision to drop legal cases against three rights activists who authored a report last year accusing Thai security forces of abuse and torture in restive southern Thai provinces.

In early 2016, rights lawyers Somchai Homlaor, Pornpen Khongkachonkie, and Anchana Heemmina, published a report citing 54 cases of alleged torture and mistreatment of prisoners in military custody.

Three majority Muslim Malay provinces have been the center of a 12-year insurgency that has claimed more than 6,000 lives with little progress in efforts to achieve a peaceful settlement.

Following the report’s public release, Thai Internal Security Operations Command officials filed a criminal complaint against the activists, accusing them of defamation and breaches of the Computer Crimes Act.They faced prison sentences of up to five years and fines of $2,800.

The decision to drop the charges Tuesday followed negotiations and agreement by the activists to present future evidence to the ISOC before releasing any report.

http://www.voanews.com/a/activist-welcome-thai-decision-to-drop-charges-against-rights-report-author/3755146.html

http://www.omct.org/human-rights-defenders/urgent-interventions/thailand/2017/03/d24239/

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