For immediate release on 13 march 2012
Thai government urged to review another extension
of states of emergency in the Southern Border Provinces
With the submission of an Open Letter no. 2 dated on 12 Mar 2012 to the Prime Minister of Thailand, the Cross Cultural Foundation (CrCF) and the Foundation of Muslim Attorney Centre (MAC) would like to urge the government to review the extension of states of emergency in the Southern Border Provinces (SPBs) with the following reasons and recommendations;
1. The enforcement of the Emergency Decree on Government Administration in States of Emergency B.E. 2548 (2005) has compromised the roles of criminal justice process as well as safeguards of people’s rights and liberties. The judiciary is supposed to provide for checks and balances with the administrative and legislative powers. However in there is a provision in this ED that except for administrative court power.
2. 78.50% of security cases tried in 2011 were dismissed by the Courts of Justice in the SPBs, mainly due to that the implicating evidence submitted to the Court had been derived from interrogation invoking the Emergency Decree and carried no weight in the conviction of a person. It has led to a loss of faith among public in state justice process.
3. The Legislature, an elected body, should play more roles in verifying the reasons and necessities for imposing the states of emergency. And such a decision to impose the states of emergency should be subjected to open debates in the Parliament and public and academic sector should be encouraged to be part of the review of the decision, too.
4. The Thai government is obliged to genuinely act in compliance with recommendations derived from the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) under the UN Human Rights Council, particularly the recommendations which urge Thailand to take immediate steps to revoke the implementation of security-related laws and another recommendation by the Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC) which urges Thailand to review its security-related laws with a view to prohibiting criminal or administrative proceeding against children under the age of 18.
CrCF and MAC urge that the Thai government review the extension of the imposition of the Emergency Decree in the SPBs for Mar 2012- Jun 2012 (three months period) and make their effort to encourage all concerned parties, state sector and civil society, to share their opinion and information in order to identify comprehensive solutions to make possible lasting peace. The immediate revocation of the states of emergency shall assure ASEAN of lasting peace and fling open spaces to collaborate among ASEAN countries in response to threats to state stabilities and wellbeing of people.
For more information, please contact
Ms. Pornpen Khongkachonkiet 02-6934939
Mr. Sitthipong Chantharawirote 089 873 1626
Ecls: A copy of a letter to the Prime Minister dated 12 March 2012