The content in this page ("FIDH/UCL joint oral statement on the Universal Periodic Review outcome of Thailand" by International Federation for Human Rights and Union for Civil Liberty) is not produced by Prachatai staff. Prachatai merely provides a platform, and the opinions stated here do not necessarily reflect those of Prachatai.

FIDH/UCL joint oral statement on the Universal Periodic Review outcome of Thailand

19th Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council Geneva, March 15, 2012

FIDH and UCL deeply regret that Thailand did not accept key recommendations related to the core human rights concerns undermining its compliance with international human rights law, including the restriction of freedom of expression through the use of the lèse-majesté law and the Computer-related Crimes Act, and the retention of draconian special security laws. This contradicts Thailand’s otherwise pro-human rights rhetoric and the voluntary commitments it made under the UPR.

While we applaud the recommendations on abolition of the death penalty, made by countries such as Brazil, Turkey, and Nicaragua, it is deeply regrettable that Thailand refused to accept them even though its Second National Human Rights Action Plan contains a reference to parliamentary debate of capital crimes and replacement of the death penalty with life imprisonment. Thailand should devote adequate resources to ensure the planned study into the possibility of abolition will be conducted without delay in broad and transparent consultation with the public and civil society, and be accompanied by clear, time-bound target dates for its conclusion.  Meanwhile, we call on the government to impose a moratorium on execution as a concrete gesture of its sincere intention to respect the right to life.

The on-going practice of shackling of male prisoners sentenced to death was unfortunately not raised during the interactive dialogue of the Review. We call on the government to end this inhumane and torturous treatment without delay, in line with the ruling of Thailand’s Administrative Court in 2009 and the recommendation made by the UN Human Rights Committee in 2005.

We further urge Thailand to set time-bound target dates for the conclusion of its consideration processes regarding the Migrants Rights Convention and the 1951 Refugee Convention and its 1967 Protocol, with a view to become a state party to these key instruments soon.

Finally, we strongly urge Thailand to reconsider its positions on the recommendations that it rejected. A failure to fully address these concerns will impair the on-going efforts to promote national reconciliation, erode public confidence in the government’s adherence to democratic values, and damage Thailand’s standing as a member of the Human Rights Council and the UN.

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