Thailand: Tensions rise ahead of amnesty bill showdown, protests (UPDATE)

Originally published at Siam Voices on October 31, 2013 UPDATE (November 1, 8.00am): After an 18-hour marathon session ending at 4.20 am, parliament punched the Amnesty Bill through the second and third reading with 310 votes, while 4 MPs abstained: the red shirt leaders Natthawut Saikaur and Weng Tojirakarn, original bill sponsor Worachai Hema and Khattiya Sawasdipol, and the daughter… More Thailand: Tensions rise ahead of amnesty bill showdown, protests (UPDATE)

Ex-yellow shirt leader Sondhi found guilty of insulting Thai monarchy

Originally published at Siam Voices on October 2, 2013 Thai court sentences former leader of the ultra-royalist and reactionary yellow shirts movement Sondhi Limthongkul to two years in jail for lèse majesté, but for entirely the wrong reasons. Things went from bad to worse for Sondhi Limthongkul, the media mogul turned leader of the so-called ‘People’s… More Ex-yellow shirt leader Sondhi found guilty of insulting Thai monarchy

Is this the end for Thailand’s ultra-nationalist yellow shirts?

Originally published at Siam Voices on August 26, 2013 As leaders of the ultra-nationalist People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) announce they have quit their roles in the movement, is this the end for Thailand’s yellow shirts? It was a Friday and the end of a rather tumultuous political week with long parliament debates on constitutional… More Is this the end for Thailand’s ultra-nationalist yellow shirts?

Thailand: Reconciliation games continue as amnesty bill goes to parliament

Originally published at Siam Voices on July 26, 2013 When Thailand’s parliament reconvenes next week to continue the political season one of the most discussed and possibly the most controversial issue will be the passing of the so-called amnesty or reconciliation bill. Advertised as a means to overcome the ongoing political division by giving far-reaching… More Thailand: Reconciliation games continue as amnesty bill goes to parliament

Thailand: Ultra-conservatives hijack “Thai Spring” moniker

Originally published at Siam Voices on May 17, 2013 Thailand’s political climate could be heating up again after the Prime Minister’s Mongolia speech has caused strong reactions, especially from anti-government groups. A new online group now has now claimed the ‘Thai Spring’ moniker to denounce the government, but it has very little to do with… More Thailand: Ultra-conservatives hijack “Thai Spring” moniker

Thai army ordered to stand down after bullying yellow shirt paper

Originally published at Siam Voices on January 14, 2013 This past weekend, around 40-50 military officers suddenly showed up in front of the building of ASTV-Manager protesting the paper’s harsh criticism of the army and the ‘slandering’ of their armed forces chief General Prayuth Chan-ocha. The soldiers from the 1st army region assembled on Friday… More Thai army ordered to stand down after bullying yellow shirt paper

Thailand in 2012 – Some personal thoughts (Part 1)

Originally published at Siam Voices on December 28, 2012 As tradition dictates, we’re here to yet again look back at the year gone by in Thailand. It looks quite different compared to the previous ones – at least on the surface. While we did not have to deal with week-long political protests, ‘biblical’ natural disasters,… More Thailand in 2012 – Some personal thoughts (Part 1)

Op-Ed: A ‘truth’ for the sake of Thailand’s reconciliation does little

Originally published at Siam Voices on September 30, 2012 Last week, the Truth for Reconciliation Commission of Thailand (TRCT) presented its final report of their investigations of the violent clashes between the authorities and the red shirts during the 2010 anti-government protests. At least 92 people were killed and thousands injured. The overall outcome was… More Op-Ed: A ‘truth’ for the sake of Thailand’s reconciliation does little

Thailand’s yellow shirts change focus, abandon street protests… for now

Originally published at Siam Voices on March 12, 2012 The ultra-nationalist “People’s Alliance for Democracy” (PAD), also commonly known as the yellow shirts, have assembled for the first time since Yingluck Shinawatra became prime minister. Yingluck is the sister of their arch-nemesis and former Thai PM Thaksin Shinawatra. With the change of government came also the… More Thailand’s yellow shirts change focus, abandon street protests… for now