Annual Report: Thailand 2011

May 28, 2011

Annual Report: Thailand 2011

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  • In August, the police dropped all charges against a former paramilitary ranger alleged to have been involved in a 2009 attack on the Al-Furqan mosque in which 10 Muslims were killed. For the seventh consecutive year, no official was successfully prosecuted for human rights violations in the south.

Death penalty

There were no known executions. As of August, there were 708 people facing the death penalty whose cases were on appeal or final, 339 of them for drug offences. On 13 January, the Minister of Interior announced a campaign to extend the death penalty for drug offences under three existing laws. These developments contradicted Thailand's Second National Human Rights Plan for 2009 to 2013 which included the intention to abolish the death penalty.

In both April and May, following outbreaks of violence between anti-government protesters and security forces, the government stated that some detainees would be charged with terrorism, which could result in the death penalty.

Death row prisoners continued to be shackled in leg irons upon arrival in prison despite a 2009 court decision (since appealed) declaring it "illegal". The Truth for Reconciliation Commission recommended in July that the practice be stopped immediately.

  • In December, Thailand abstained from a UN General Assembly resolution calling for a worldwide moratorium on executions, having voted against the resolution in 2007-2009.