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Police chief orders search for ‘instigator’ of Koh Tao protests

BANGKOK: National police chief Chakthip Chaijinda on Monday (Dec 28) announced that he had ordered police nationwide to find the supposed shadowy group that law enforcement insists is “instigating” protests over the Koh Tao murders ruling.

Myanmar, homicide, crime, police, politics, immigration, violence, corruption,


Bangkok Post

Monday 28 December 2015, 07:44PM


Police chief Chakthip Chaijinda said he ordered subordinates to look for a supposed mastermind behind Myanmar protests against the Koh Tao ruling. Photo: Bangkok Post / Pornprom Satrabhaya
Police chief Chakthip Chaijinda said he ordered subordinates to look for a supposed mastermind behind Myanmar protests against the Koh Tao ruling. Photo: Bangkok Post / Pornprom Satrabhaya

While Myanmar’s Foreign Ministry said no one group was behind the widespread protests and there was no evidence to support such a accusation, Thai police continue to assert that the outrage over the death sentences handed down to two Myanmar migrant workers is being stoked by groups trying to exploit the situation for political purposes.

Protests have taken place since Thursday (Dec 24) at the Thai embassy in Yangon, border areas opposite Chiang Rai and Kanchanaburi. On Monday, they spread to Sri Lanka, where monks from Myanmar demonstrated outside the Thai embassy in Colombo. Other small protests have been seen as far away as Japan.

“Only some groups are taking action to oppose the court ruling. In Thailand police are preventing it,” the police chief said.

He repeated reasoning made by police spokesman at a news conference Sunday (Dec 27) that there had been 126 previous murder convictions of Myanmar nationals in Thailand, yet only this one was sparking protest.

“Police are looking for the people who instigated it. I ordered all units related to security, especially the Special Branch division, to find the groups that are behind the demonstrations by Myanmar people,” Pol Gen Chakthip said, admitting he had “no idea” who the supposed instigators are or if they are even in Thailand.

KMM Services

The pursuit of a supposed instigator of the protests is yet another sign that Thai officials have been put on the defensive by Thursday’s judgement, which has been seen by Myanmar citizens at the culmination of a year-long frame job of Zaw Lin and Win Zaw Htun for the September 2014 rape and murder of Hannah Witheridge and the murder of David Miller on Koh Tao.

A visibly angry Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha lashed out at protesters on Monday and Pol Gen Chakthip wondered aloud if Thais should start protesting decisions by Myanmar courts.

Widely seen as botched, the investigation was tainted by allegations of torture of the two 22-year-old men and mishandling of DNA evidence. Both Myanmar’s army chief and ambassador have called for the case to be reinvestigated, a request flatly denied by Thai officials.

 

Read original story here.

 

 

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Richard Vickers | 30 December 2015 - 18:17:15

After thinking more about this, I sure hope that the big'ol "Instigator" in this case doesn't happen to be some Burmese guy. If Chief Chakthip ends up arresting a Burmese or 2 on "Instigator" charges, people might think he was simply looking for a scapegoat to pin the crime on... but then...nah, everyone knows that Thailand would never do such a thing.

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Richard Vickers | 30 December 2015 - 10:23:58

Great comments...but I think I'll keep mum, as I don't want to find myself sitting in a military facility getting my attitude adjusted. BUt I will say, that I think the root cause of the majority of problems in this beautiful country are because of the police. Until this police force is 100% gutted and replaced...nothing will get better here.

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Christy Sweet | 29 December 2015 - 13:12:07

It's like Orwell mixed with Monty Python with a dash of Kafka.  

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Richme | 29 December 2015 - 07:50:48

This is the true face from the 'leaders' of Thailand. Don't demonstrate your opinion, the 'leader' himself will be angry and upset.

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cgtours | 29 December 2015 - 00:53:10

Where there is smoke it could be a fire.!

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Seaturtle55 | 28 December 2015 - 22:24:51

I have always been a supporter for those whom I thought were trying to end corruption and bring about a return to what was the LOS where S stood for smiles!  But this attempt to blame protests against the conviction of the two Myanmar youths on some clandestine group when it is clearly the result of dissatisfaction with the conduct of the RTP and of a court who, rather than allowing transparency, hid the court proceedings behind a ban on those present not only NOT being allowed to record the proceedings, but NOT even being allowed to take notes during the proceedings.  What kind of a judicial system other than one modelled after some Kafkaesque pretension to modern justice would allow such a ban!! Just the fact that the DNA evidence upon which the RTP based their "hard evidence" ended up not being available...used up according to one, lost according to another...COUPLED with the fact that a very brave forensic expert for the defence gave evidence that DNA was found where the RTP said there was none and that is was NOT that of the accused should have been enough to bring about a finding of NOT GUILTY!! I sure as hell needed no instigation to protest this finding by what I had thought to be a Court of Law!!  As a retired police officer with considerable involvement with criminal investigations, I was and am appalled at many of the things which were allowed to take place during the murder investigation and trial,  but I am even more appalled at  National police chief Chakthip Chaijinda's assertions that a "shadow group" is responsible for the protests!!   National police chief Chakthip Chaijinda, you don't have to look for any "shadow group"...simply look at the honest citizens within and without your country!!  With respect, such allegations along with the recent proposal by a fellow officer that clicking the "Like" button on Facebook constitutes a criminal act are placing you in danger of being considered a "horse's ass" even though you may have scared them into a sullen silence!! Is this what "rule' means? Squash the minor players in corruption, place fear in any 'salt of the earth' Thai citizens so that they APPEAR to be in agreement with you...but allow the major players for whom corruption is their bread and butter to continue on?  Is this the goal? If so, understand that this is Thailand's enemy!!  If this expression of what is an honest desire on my part to see Thailand rise above the allegations from within and without its borders of being a country steeped in corruption is considered to be some form of criminal act, so be it!!  But the fact is, I wish nothing more than for Thailand to rid itself of its enemies...enemies that want some things to remain the same...MONIED  MEN to be translated into meaning "ABOVE THE LAW"!  As far as the protests, look within your own group....for it is there that I suggest you may find the answer as to why people are protesting!!

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