Academic harassment

Earlier in the month PPT posted the Amnesty International statement on the profoundly ludicrous charges against academics and students from Chiang Mai University. Those charges were against Prof Chayan Vaddhanaphuti, director of the Regional Centre for Social Science and Sustainable Development at Chiang Mai University, Pakawadee Veerapatpong, Chaipong Samnieng, Nontawat Machai and Thiramon Bua-ngam. They attended and organized the 13th International Conference on Thai Studies at Chiang Mai University in July 2017. They all denied charges of breaching the junta’s ban on political assembly. Human Rights Watch described the charges as bogus.

They were formally indicted in Chiang Mai on 4 July. Their next court hearing is set for 18 August.

For more information on the case, see the latest update by Thai Lawyers for Human Rights.

To take action and call for the prosecution to be halted, you can sign this letter organized by Scholars at Risk and please also forward the link to other colleagues.

Scholars at Risk has also sent a formal letter General Prayuth Chan-ocha and other relevant parties calling for the prosecution to cease.

The International Commission for Jurists has issued a formal letter calling for the prosecution to be stopped.

This case is one of many cases of restriction of freedom of thought and political freedom generally under the military dictatorship. For more information on the range of prosecutions for lese majeste, sedition, public assembly, and other peaceful actions, see the four-year report of Thai Lawyers for Human Rights.

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