Launching of an Appeal against Repression in Thailand

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The crackdown on the opposition in Thailand and the abuses of the regime have not been met with the solidarity response and the international condemnations which the situation required. The regime can thus freely operate and stifle the democratic movement.

News from Thailand are alarming: hundreds of people detained for violations of the Emergency Decree, including children; injured people are chained to their hospital bed, several assassinations of local leaders of the Red Shirts have taken place. The country is moving deeper into an authoritarian and military regime. The elite are even considering postponing the elections for six years, thus giving the Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva the possibility of leading the country for ten years against the will of the majority of Thai citizens.

Thai society is deeply unequal in every respect. The red shirts have expressed loud and clear their determination to fight the injustices they suffer: they express a class movement as well as one defending regional diversity, against the establishment in Bangkok.

The Red Shirts movement is not without divisions and problems. Some support the return of former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, a corrupt politician. But overwhelmingly, the movement expresses the revolt of the downtrodden of society whose demands are democracy and social justice.

By demonstrating in the streets of Bangkok, the Red Shirts have only been exercising a basic right: the right to express one’s political views and demands. Abhisit Vejjajiva bears full responsibility for the repression and the casualties because, rather than holding meaningful negotiations, he gambled, in vain, on the disintegration of the movement. He then used the repressive legal arsenal (accusations of conspiracy against the monarchy and of terrorism), and finally organized a bloodbath.

This appeal has two simple aims: kick-starting solidarity on the international level, and calling for the Thai regime to stop the repression against the Red Shirts, and to respect fundamental freedoms.

More than a hundred university lecturers, researchers, writers, journalists, trade union and political activists, and elected representatives from all regions of the world have already signed the appeal. New signatures are expected.

Danielle Sabai and Pierre Rousset

To see the Appeal and the signatures, click here:
Appeal Against Repression in Thailand

To sign the call , write here:

The list of signatures will be kept updated on ESSF website.

The Appeal is sent to the Thai government, Thai embassies, international Human Rights organisations...

It is important that this appeal is sent to all concerned networks and that new signatures are added from Members of elected bodies (Parliaments, etc.), from the academe, from representatives of social movements or TUs, political or Human Rights organisations... from as many coutries as possible. Each one of us can help in doing so.