Going after kids

A few days ago, PPT posted on the military junta “going after grannies.” Now, sadly, we must post that the junta has gone after kids. Not university students who have been anti-coup activists, but a 14 year-old kid holding a sign against the use of Article 44 against Wat Dhammakaya.

The grannies weren’t jailed, but the kid has been.

In danger of junta arrest

This is not the first time the junta’s thugs have gone after kids. In 2016, the goons grabbed a couple of 8 year-olds for play determined as anti-junta. In the same period they determined that other kids were “threatening” and perhaps in the hire of “politicians.”

In the current case, Prachatai reports that “police … revealed that they have arrested a 14-year-old disciple of Dhammakaya Temple for protesting against the junta’s use of Section 44 to tighten control around Dhammakaya Temple’s complex.”

Khaosod reports that the boy was recently bailed after a week in juvenile detention.

Khlong Luang police in Pathum Thani Province confirmed that they arrested the boy on 8 March 2017. He was arrested with three other adult protesters.

The police claim they “arrested him for holding a banner to protest against the junta’s use of Section 44 of the Interim Constitution…”.

Col. Samart Srisiriwiboonchai, who is the acting chief thug at Khlong Luang Police Station, said “it was necessary for police to arrest and prosecute the boy.” It seems the police felt threatened:

“They were together, so we arrested them together…. They were obstructing our operations. They were not peaceful protesters as they claimed. They acted in an aggressive way.”

Another thug-cop simply stated: “The kid violated the NCPO [junta] order…”.

The boy’s father sought to bail him of 10 March but was rejected. On 13 March, another bail attempt was rejected. On 14 March the boy’s mother submitted another bail request and this was also rejected.

On the last attempt the court declared “that the parents of the detainee are living separately and do not seem to be able to raise him properly, so he should be taken care of by the JOPC [the juvenile detention center].”

Whatever one thinks of Wat Dhammakaya, the machinations of the junta are astounding. Recall that this is happening as the junta’s 46-member shopping team are “defending” its horrendous human right record before the U.N. in Geneva.

As ever, the military dictatorship shows its true nature by its unconscionable behavior.

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