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Thai pro-democracy activists hit with more lese majeste charges

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A security guard attempts to restrict a photographer from taking photos of a protest calling for the release of detained Thai human rights activist Somyot Pruksakasemsuk, outside the Thai consulate in Hong Kong on June 29, 2011. AFP

Thai pro-democracy activists hit with more lese majeste charges

Thai pro-democracy activist Somyot Pruksakasemsuk said in a Facebook post on December 7 that he was summoned by the Chanasongkram Police Station to face lese majeste charges.

His post also included a copy of the summons, which said Somyot and fellow activists like Parit “Penguin” Chiwarak were charged of violating Article 112 of the Criminal Code at a protest on September 19 and 20.

In the post, Somyot said the lese majeste law should not be used as a weapon against the new generation. He had previously been imprisoned for seven years from 2011 for violating Article 112.

Police have so far filed lese majeste charges against 18 protest leaders after Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha gave them the green light to start enforcing the law, which had not been used for two years.

Separately, in a social-media post on December 7, Parit said the public prosecutor was not punctual in filing lawsuits against him and other protesters in relation to their role in an August 10 rally in Thammasat University’s Rangsit campus. He and fellow protesters were charged for sedition and gathering illegally at that protest.

“I don’t need to report to court in this case anymore and my concerns of being imprisoned for this rally have vanished,” he said.

He also said that he and other protesters, namely Panupong “Mike” Jadnok, Shinwatra Chankrajang and Panusaya “Rung” Sithijirawattanakul, were scheduled to visit Nonthaburi Police Station on December 8 to face lese majeste charges.

He added that police have informed their lawyer in advance that the protesters will be detained.

THE NATION (THAILAND)/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

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