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Thailand Human Rights

Human Rights Concerns

Under the previous elected government of Thai Rak Thai (Thai Love Thai) leader and media tycoon Thaksin Shinawatra (January 2001 — September 2006), there were widespread violations of human rights in Thailand. During Thaksin’s first term (January 2001 — January 2005), eighteen human rights defenders were assassinated and one was disappeared. Although arrests have been made for some of the murders, many of the cases remain unresolved. In February 2002, Thaksin's government launched a "War on Drugs," which involved the extrajudicial killings of over 2700 individuals who came under suspicion by police and other state agents of being involved in the drug trade.

In January 2004, martial law was declared in the three insurgent southernmost Muslim-majority provinces of Yala, Narathiwat, and Pattani. In July 2005, martial law was changed to a state of emergency, giving the Thai government even greater power in the South. Since the initial declaration of martial law, a tremendous number of insurgents, Thai state officials, and civilians have died as a result of the ongoing conflict in the South.

Thailand Newsroom



September 28, 2017 • Report

Between a Rock and a Hard Place

With the world’s fastest growing refugee crisis developing on its doorstep, Thailand must take concrete action to reverse its long-standing failure to offer protection to those most in need, Amnesty International said today as it launched a report revealing gaping holes in the country’s refugee policies.

September 23, 2016 • Report

Thailand: A culture of torture under the military

Since seizing power in a 2014 coup, Thailand’s military authorities have allowed a culture of torture and other ill-treatment to flourish across the country, with soldiers and policemen targeting suspected …

February 18, 2016 • Report

Amnesty International State of the World 2015-2016

International protection of human rights is in danger of unravelling as short-term national self-interest and draconian security crackdowns have led to a wholesale assault on basic freedoms and rights, warned Amnesty International as it launched its annual assessment of human rights around the world. “Your rights are in jeopardy: they are being treated with utter contempt by many governments around the world,” said Salil Shetty, Secretary General of Amnesty International.

February 25, 2015 • Report

State of the World 2014/2015

This has been a devastating year for those seeking to stand up for human rights and for those caught up in the suffering of war zones. Governments pay lip service to the importance of protecting civilians. And yet the world's politicians have miserably failed to protect those in greatest need. Amnesty International believes that this can and must finally change.

May 29, 2013 • Report

Annual Report: Thailand 2013

Kingdom of Thailand Head of state King Bhumibol Adulyadej Head of government Yingluck Shinawatra The armed conflict continued in the South as insurgents targeted civilians in violent attacks, while security …

September 26, 2011 • Report

Thailand: Insurgents must stop war crimes against civilians

Thailand’s three southern-most provinces are host to a non-international armed conflict, based on the intensity and duration of hostilities there, as well as the existence of organized groups of insurgents. Amnesty International believes that the insurgents, through widespread killings of civilians from both Buddhist and Muslim communities, are committing acts aimed at spreading terror among the civilian population. This report examines the circumstances surrounding 82 deaths that resulted from attacks by insurgents. Fifty-five of those killed were Muslims, while 27 were Buddhists. Individual cases are illustrative.

July 7, 2011 • Report

Annual Report: Thailand 2011

Head of state: King Bhumibol Adulyadej Head of government: Abhisit Vejjajiva Death penalty: retentionist Population: 68.1 million Life expectancy: 69.3 years Under-5 mortality (m/f): 13/8 per 1,000 Adult literacy: 93.5 …

March 19, 2011 • Report

Annual Report: Thailand 2010

Head of state King Bhumibol Adulyadej Head of government Abhisit Vejjajiva Death penalty retentionist Population 67.8 million Life expectancy 68.7 years Under-5 mortality (m/f) 13/8 per 1,000 Adult literacy rates …

August 25, 2020 • Press Release

Facebook caves to abusive censorship requests in Thailand

Responding to news that Facebook has complied with censorship requests from the Thai authorities, Rasha Abdul-Rahim, Amnesty Tech’s Acting Program Co-Director said: “Once again, Facebook is caving to the whims …

February 10, 2020 • Press Release

Explainer: Seven ways the coronavirus affects human rights

The outbreak of the coronavirus (2019-nCov) that started in the Chinese city of Wuhan (Hubei province) in late 2019 has been declared a global health emergency by the World Health Organization (WHO). …