STRASBOURG — The EU Parliament on Thursday condemned human rights abuses in Thailand and called on its military government to return the country to civilian rule.
In a nonbinding resolution, the parliament expressed its concern over Thailand’s deteriorating human rights situation since the military seized power in 2014 and issued specific calls urging the country to “lift repressive restrictions on the right to liberty and the peaceful exercise of other human rights.”
“Thailand must hear very clearly a strong demand on part of the European Parliament that democracy must be reinstated there, which the country deserves,” said Polish Vice President of the parliament Ryszard Czarnecki. “… We should not only monitor the situation in Thailand up close, we should indicate that our economic cooperation may actually be hinged on Thailand’s cooperation with human rights.”
The motion was passed 581-to-35 with 35 abstentions.
Thailand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs expressed disappointment with the resolution this morning, saying the EU Parliament “misunderstands” Thailand’s determination and commitment to protecting and uplifting human rights, and respecting its international obligations. The Ministry insisted Thailand is strictly following its roadmap to election.
“Thailand welcomes all constructive and balanced suggestions that are based on correct information and is ready to cooperate with the EU on every level over issues,” read the statement from ministry spokesman Sek Wannamethee.