New York, December 1, 2008--As Thailand's political crisis deepens, the Committee to Protect Journalists urgently calls on both sides of the conflict to end their attacks on reporters and media outlets and allow all journalists to report freely on breaking news.
New York, August 26, 2008—The Committee to Protect Journalists strongly condemns an attack led by anti-government protesters against state-run National Broadcasting Service of Thailand (NBT) television news station.
The People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) protest group ambushed and seized control of the station’s headquarters in Bangkok early this morning as part of several ambush-style attacks on government buildings across the Thai capital. Protesters forced their way through police blockades to enter the station, according to international news reports.
Chalee was killed by a car bomb that apparently targeted people arriving at the scene of a blast that occurred minutes earlier in the town of Sungai Kolok on the Malaysian border, according to local and international news reports. At least 30 people were injured in the second explosion, which occurred 20 minutes after a smaller motorcycle bombing that left no casualties, according to The Associated Press. The attacks, attributed to local insurgents in a region rife with Muslim separatist violence, occurred outside a restaurant near the local police station, news reports say.
New York, August 6, 2008—The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on Thailand’s government to launch an independent investigation into the recent shooting death of Athiwat Chaiyanurat, a reporter with the Thai-language daily newspaper Matichon and a stringer for the army-owned Channel 7 television station. A local press freedom group said he had been threatened for his reporting.
New York, June 6, 2008—The Committee to Protect Journalists is concerned by the legal harassment of BBC correspondent Jonathan Head in Thailand. A high-ranking police official, Lt. Col. Wattanasak Mungkandee, has filed two separate criminal complaints alleging that the journalist insulted the monarchy—charges that Head and the BBC have called unfounded.
Thai law allows any citizen to bring complaints against anyone they believe has insulted the country’s monarchy. Mungkandee reportedly brought the complaints in a personal capacity. Violations of lese majeste laws are a criminal offense punishable by three to 15 years imprisonment.
Dear Mr. Darmp, The Committee to Protect Journalists is concerned about libel lawsuits Tesco Lotus has initiated against journalists who reported and wrote opinion pieces on your company's growing operations in Thailand. While we recognize the right of corporations to take civil legal action to protect their reputation, we view the complaints and the monetary damages Tesco Lotus is seeking in these cases as punitive and a direct threat to press freedom and free public commentary.
New York, February 15, 2008—The Committee to Protect Journalists is concerned about recent news reports that Thai radio broadcaster Chirmsak Pinthong’s popular talk news program has been cancelled.
Chirmsak told local reporters that his program was cancelled after Jakrapob Penkair, a minister in the prime minister’s office, called FM 105 station’s concession holder, Fatima Broadcasting International Co., and requested that they remove the program known as “Chirmsak’s Viewpoints” from the station, which is owned by the state-run Public Relations Department.
Do you believe the free flow of information must be protected? Sign the #RightToReport petition and demand that President Obama immediately:
1. Issue a presidential policy directive prohibiting the hacking and surveillance of journalists and media organizations.
2. Limit aggressive prosecutions that ensnare journalists and intimidate whistleblowers.
3. Prevent the harassment of journalists at the U.S. border.
Or click here to see the full petition, and join leading journalists like Christiane Amanpour, The Guardian’s Alan Rusbridger, Editor of the AP Kathleen Carroll, and Arianna Huffington in signing on.