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Bullet that Hit Me Came from Military Gun – Dutch Journalist

Dutch journalist Michel Maas took the Department of Special Investigation (DSI) and the press on a tour in Ratchaprasong on Wednesday, showing where he was shot by the military on the morning of May 19th 2010.

Michel was in Thailand reporting on the military crackdown of Red Shirt protests for Netherlands Radio Worldwide and the Volkskrant newspaper. He was with a group of journalists on Ratchadamri Road when the army suddenly started shooting indiscriminately at the crowd of protesters.

He was shot in the shoulder and, shortly afterwards, was rushed to the nearby Police General Hospital from where he resumed his broadcast.

On Wednesday he spoke to reporters and the DSI on the spot where he was shot two years ago.

(more…)

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“We use ideas, not violence” -UDD Leaders

At the press conference today, UDD leaders addressed Tuesday’s violent clash between Red Shirts and Yellow Shirts, the relationship between the Pheu Thai party and the Red Shirt movement, as well as the Truth for Reconciliation Commission of Thailand’s (TRCT) final report. They also announced the opening of a Political School on Sunday in Bangkok.

Regarding the clash that occurred on Tuesday in front of the Crime Suppression Division (CSD) office, Warawut Wichaidit argued that the conflict was initiated by Yellow Shirts in an attempt to provoke violence from the Red Shirts. He reaffirmed that the Red Shirts must refrain from engaging with the Yellow Shirts in this way, as it is part of a plot to demonise the Red Shirts and depict them as a violent group. (more…)

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TRCT failures confirm importance of ICC – UDD lawyer

UDD lawyer Robert Amsterdam issued a paper on Monday, titled “License to Kill,” that critiques the Truth for Reconciliation for Thailand (TRCT) report that was released last week for its lack of  fresh evidence and its blatant failure to account for the killing of unarmed civilians by soldiers.

Amsterdam writes that,

The findings of the TRCT not only provide further evidence for the admissibility of the case before the ICC, on the basis that Thailand remains unable and unwilling to prosecute crimes against humanity, but underscores the urgency of taking action to end impunity in order to prevent the reoccurrence of similar incidents.

In the paper, Amsterdam describes the TRCT report as an

Attempt to shield those who planned, carried out, and oversaw the 2010 crackdowns from accountability.

(more…)

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Yellow Shirts attack Red Shirts. UDD Leadership call for calm

Yellow Shirts vandalize pickup truck around noon, Tuesday

In Bangkok, Red Shirts and Yellow Shirts clashed in front of the Crime Suppression Division (CSD) offices on Phahon Yothin road after a violent mob of Yellow Shirts trashed the car of Red Shirt DJ Ko Tee around noon on Tuesday. The Yellow Shirts, who greatly out-numbered the Red Shirts for most of the day, threw water bottles and stones at the Red camp who attempted to defend themselves. Up to 600 police officers were deployed to control the situation and a Yellow Shirt protester was arrested for carrying a firearm. A Red Shirt protester suffered head injuries after being hit by a stone and was taken to hospital. Four other injuries were reported, including a news reporter.

As it becomes evermore apparent that the TRCT report delivers neither truth nor reconciliation, it is vital that the Red Shirts ignore provocations from the Yellow Shirts and their affiliates in the Democrat Party. (more…)

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Academic Panel Blasts TRCT Report

A fact-finding panel of academics spent nearly four hours dissecting the Truth for Reconciliation Commission of Thailand (TRCT) report on Sunday afternoon at Thammasat University. The panel, which included six professors from multiple universities, argued that the report lacks in raw data and fails to condemn the army’s disproportionate use of force in handling the protests of April-May 2010.

According to the panel, the TRCT report’s 300 pages are superficial and ignore the crucial question of whether the Committee for the Resolution of Emergency Situation (CRES) complied with international standards when it ordered 60,000 combat-ready soldiers onto the streets of Bangkok.

Instead, the TRCT tried to blame the violence on the supposed “men in black”, based on dubious evidence that would not hold in a court of law. In the report, the TRCT use such flimsy evidence to conveniently include the “men in black” in every scenario and situation where unarmed protesters are murdered or injured by the Royal Thai Army (RTA).

(more…)

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Pictures suggest Thai Army’s covert infiltration of Red Shirts in 2010

At the weekly press conference yesterday, Friday 21st September, the UDD reaffirmed its opposition to the Truth for Reconciliation Commission (TRC) report, and exposed several factors that demonstrate that the report is biased and unreliable. Spokesperson Warawut Wichaidit, prominent UDD member Somwang Asrasi, and Chairwoman Tida Thavornseth each took turns punching holes in the TRC report’s findings and its supposed claims of impartiality.

In summary, Chairwoman Tida said:

Although there are a few positive elements in the TRC report, they are overshadowed by its many instances of lies and misinformation.

Most significantly, Chairwoman Tida showed pictures in which soldiers are seen in the army controlled areas wearing red and black shirts and carrying weapons. Such images raise serious questions about the report’s unsubstantiated conclusion that the “Black Shirts” were an armed element of the Red Shirt movement.

Furthermore, a video-clip shows Red Shirt protesters fending off armed “men in black” from the Hua Chiew hospital where General Major Khattiya Sawasdipol, also known as Seh Daeng, was being kept in critical condition after being shot in the head by a sniper. The “men in black” had come to remove Seh Daeng from the hospital grounds. This clip significantly undermines the theory that Seh Daeng was the effective leader of the “Black Shirts”.

(more…)

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UDD rejects the TRCT Report

Press Release
Wednesday 19 September 2012

The United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD) rejects the findings of the TRCT report for lack of scientific proof on the existence of the “Black Shirts” and its pervasive ambiguity which offers no justice to the victims of the April-May 2010 military crackdown and their families.

The TRCT was established at the wrong time, and by the wrong people. UDD Chairwoman Thida Thavornseth says, “How can we trust a commission that was appointed by the very government that is responsible for the deaths? It was not a process led by the people.”

The head of the commission, Khanit na Nakhon, has publicly expressed his profound dislike of PM Thaksin Shinawatra, having left the Thai Rak Thai party on bad terms. This calls into question his suitability as an impartial observer.

(more…)

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Red in the Land

Welcome to thairedshirts.org

This is the first post on this website, which will be updated regularly with news, editorials, and information on the Red Shirt movement, the largest pro-democracy movement in Thailand’s history.

Our mission is to give an English voice to the millions of Thais who believe in true democracy and real justice in Thailand.

Stay tuned for the latest on South-East Asia’s most important pro-democracy movement of the 21st century.

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