6 Activists Charged for Making Reform Calls at Protest

Civil rights lawyer and activist Arnon Nampa at an anti-government rally on Aug. 10, 2020.
Civil rights lawyer and activist Arnon Nampa at an anti-government rally on Aug. 10, 2020.

PATHUM THANI — The court approved arrest warrants for six activists on charges related to the anti-government rally they organized at Thammasat University last week, police said Wednesday.

Provincial police commander Chayut Marayat said the activists were accused of committing seditious acts under Article 116 of the Penal Code and breaking pandemic prevention law. Police have treated the case in accordance with the evidence and legal processes, he said.

“We’re exercising our power in accordance with the laws,” Maj. Gen. Chayut said. “Everything we’ve done is fair and transparent. There’s no harassment.”

Activist Panusaya Sithijirawattanakul, Panupong Jadnok, Arnon Nampa, Nutchanon Pairoj, as well as the two emcees for the rally are among those named in the warrant. The charges followed their speeches on August 10 which were deemed critical to the country’s much-revered institution.


Panusaya, who called for reforms of the institution at the rally, said she is not surprised by the charges and vowed to continue pushing her agenda.

“I’m not surprised to see this in a country where there’s no freedom of speech,” Panusaya said in a statement on her Twitter. “Our speeches must push someone’s buttons. Don’t you think that we will retreat, we will fight more because our enemy is the only one person.”

At least 31 people had previously been marked for arrests on charges related to another anti-government rally they organized on July 18, according to media reports. Three activists, including Arnon Nampa, were already arrested and later released on bail while their trial was ongoing.


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