The military at 10 am on Thursday released the five student activists from Khon Kaen University with no charge.
Since Wednesday the military has tried to force the group to sign a document stating that they admit their wrongdoing in protesting against the coup and promising not to hold any further political activities, according to Jatupat Boonpattararaksa, a fifth year law student who is one of the five.
On Thursday two students complied while three others refused to sign the document.
On Wednesday, the military threatened that if the students did not sign the document, they would be fired from the university. However, on Thursday the military did not touch on the university issue at all, according to Pawinee Chumsi, a lawyer from Thai Lawyers for Humam Rights (TLHR)
The students who did not sign the document are Jatupat Boonpattararaksa, Wason Sedsit, and Wichakorn Anuchon.
The students who signed the document are Jedsarit NamKod, Payu Boonsopon.
Jatupat told Prachatai that he was amazed that they were released. The incident showed that martial law cannot do anything to them. Sign or not sign, they were all released without charge.
Apart from the students and their parents, the meeting was attended by the Dean of Khon Kaen University's Law Faculty, the Khon Kaen Governor, and military and police officers.
On Wednesday morning five student activists from the Dao Din group at northeastern Khon Kaen University were arrested after they flashed the three-fingered salute, a dissent gesture adopted from the Hunger Games, as junta leader Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha visited Khon Kaen Province.
While Gen Prayut was giving a speech at Khon Kaen Provincial Hall, the activists came and flashed the three-fingered salute and shouted “We’re against the coup.”
During their interrogation at Si Patcharin military camp in Khon Kaen, the military pressured the students to admit their 'guilt' and sign a document stating that they will not hold any further anti-coup activity. However, all of the students insisted they would not sign the document. The military then brought their parents in to pressure the students and threatened that if they did not sign the document, they would be fired from the university and officially charged. They were released on Wednesday evening but were ordered to come back on Thursday morning.