date: 6/19/2024 author: Faozee

Report on the state of public assembly in April 2024


April 2024 still saw a series of small-scale public assemblies. According to the observation and documentation by the Mob Data Thailand, in April 2024, at least 40 small-scale public assemblies were organized. For sit-in public assemblies that lasted more than one day, altogether they happened in the span of 68 times. 30 public assemblies took place in Bangkok while 10 in the province.

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Overview of public assembly

April 2024 still saw a series of small-scale public assemblies. According to the observation and documentation by the Mob Data Thailand, in April 2024, at least 40 small-scale public assemblies were organized. For sit-in public assemblies that lasted more than one day, altogether they happened in the span of 68 times. 30 public assemblies took place in Bangkok while 10 in the province. The April’s public assemblies covered a range of issues including;

1.The demand for the right to bail

Since the number of individuals prosecuted in politically motivated charges since July 2020 until present (April 2024), according to the Thai Lawyers for Human Rights (TLHR), has reached 1,954 in 1,295 cases, andthere has been continuing prosecutions including in April which sawtwo more cases filed, both of which wererelated to Facebook postings. Although there were no new cases related to public assemblies this month, many of them are pending in courts, particularly Section 112 cases. In this month, one more person was convicted in such case including Pornchai Wimonsuppawong, an ethnic Karen, who was indicted in Chiang Mai for posting four Facebook posts and he was sentenced to 12 years in total, three for each post.

Given such situation, the issue is still the most popular to prompt actions to demand the right to bail, at least 26 in April including;


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  • On 1 April, the Thumb Rights, the Labour Network for People Rights and the 24th June for Democracy and the Network of Young Generation in Nonthaburi organized the event “Amnesty Maha Songkran” in front of Klong Prem Central Prison with around 70 participants. This included the Stand Stop Imprisonment and speeches made to call for an amnesty of people and the release of political prisoners.

  • On 14 April, an independent group organized an event “Dear Our Friends in Klong Prem Central Prison” with the water-throwing activity to mark Songkran festival in front of the prison. They wanted to show they never forget political prisoners and would show photos from the event to their friends who are serving time in jail. The event was closed with the cutting of three-color ribbons at the barbed wire in front of the prison.

  • On 15 April, Khathathon “Ta”, an activist from Thalu Gaz, wore a PPE suit to participate in the Songkran festival at Khao San Road. On his PPE suit, it was written with the text “Restore right to bail, Repeal Section 112 and Free our friends” and he urged passersby to bear witness and to throw water and put powder on him to show their solidarity to the political prisoners before wrapping up his activity at the Democracy Monument.

  • The Stand Stop Imprisonment was also organized by independent groups almost the whole month of April in front of the Ratchada Criminal Court in Bangkok. The participants simply stand up while holding signs to express their thoughts and demand the right to bail for political fighters.

2.Land, nature and environmental issues


Photo Prachatai

  • According to Prachatai, on 1 April 2024, around 60 members of the Dan Khun Thot Khon Rak Ban Kerd Group have gone to submit a letter of petition to the Nakhon Ratchasima Governor at the Provincial Hall of Nakhon Ratchasima to ask to know progress after an agreement was made by Siam Sirimongkhol, former Governor of Nakhon Ratchasima, and the Khon Rak Ban Kerd Group on 20 March 2024. The Governor promised to suspend potash mining of the Thai Kali Co., Ltd. and would expedite the effort to address the existing impacts. Still, nothing has been done. Arthit Chamkhunthod, Director of the Nakhon Ratchasima Damrongtham Center, has come out to receive the letter and listen to the Dan Khun Thot Khon Rak Ban Kerd Group.2

  • Prachatai further reports that on 4 April 2024 at the meeting hall of the District Office of Pathum Rat District, Tambon Bua Daeng, Roi Et, the Hug Thung Kula Network has organized a protest against the 3rd public consultation meeting, aka K3 Forum, as part of the preparation of the Environmental Impact Assessment Report (EIA) of the sugar mill and biomass power plant to be developed in the area. Upon their arrival at the meeting hall of the District Office of Pathum Rat District, the human rights defenders of the Hug Thung Kula Network found rows of more than 100 police officers with barricades being placed to block the meeting room’s entrance to prevent the HRDs of the Hug Thung Kula Network to enter the room. The members then started to make their speeches and negotiating with the police asking for the chance to participate in the public consultation. Some elderly women who are members of the group put down clothe on the ground and started to pay their homage to the police pleading them to allow the villagers to enter the meeting room. While the HRDs of Hug Thung Kula Network were trying to walk into the meeting room, they were confronted with rows of the police who tried to push them out causing many of their members who were women and elderly persons to fall to the ground and causing a commotion. After more than three hours of making their speeches, the Hug Thung Kula Network HRDs performed a symbolic action by setting fire on effigies which represented the sugar mill and the company commissioned to organize the public consultation wishing to purge them from the Thung Kula land.

  • On 4 April 2024 at the Faculty of Law, Chiang Mai University, residents in Chiang Mai converged to declare the “Lung Cancer Risk Zone” amidst the declining air quality in Chiang Mai and other provinces in the North where the PM2.5 level stood at the dangerous level to public health causing many ailments and risk of respiratory diseases.

  • On 9 April 2024, more than 40 members of the Northern Peasant Federation (NPF) have gone to the Provincial Hall of Phrae to meet with ‘Chutidet Meechan’, the Governor of Phrae to consult with him about the overlapping of the Treasury Department’s Ratchapassadu land on the land which has been allocated to them as part of the Community Land Title in Ban San Klang, Tambon Pa Daeng, Muang District, Phrae.

  • On 10 April 2024 at the Pha Huak Pattana Chao Pracha Samakkhi Village, Tambon Dong Mafai, Suwan Khuha District, Nong Bua Lam Phu, the Khao Lao Yai-Pha Jandai Community Forest Conservation Group organized an event "The Mine Shut Down, the Bright Future, and the Steps Forward For Victory in Dong Mafai" on 10 April 2024, which was the expiry day of the permit to allow the utilization of forest area for rock quarry. Previously, the concessionary licenses of the quarry mine expired in 2020, which means the end of all the permits given to the rock quarry operation.

  • On 16 April 2024, the E-san Land Reform Network at Khok Yao community, Khon San District, Chaiyaphum, organized an event to mark the 8th anniversary of the disappearance of “Den Khamla”, a prominent land right activist from Khok Yao community. The participants were holding signs saying “Eight years of the disappearance of Den Khamla: Carrying on the fight for a just society”, and the activity was ended with the reading of a public statement.

  • In addition, on 22 April 2024, around 9.00, the People's Movement for Just Society (P-Move) from Ubonratchathani has marched to the Ubonratchathani Provincial Hall to submit a letter to urge the authorities to promptly issue Community Land Titles and to raise their concern as its members have been judicially harassed as a result of their public assemblies. The activity ended at around 10.30.

3.International solidarity


Photo PSC Thailand

  • On 5 April 2024 at 14.00, the PSC Thailand and its alliances were gathered in front of the Embassy of Israel in Thailand to demand peace through ceasefire and access to humanitarian assistance for victims of violence in the Gaza Strip. The protesters took turn to make speeches and organized a symbolic action by holding signs and Palestinian flags amidst at least 100 police officers being deployed there. The protest was called off at 16.00.

  • On 14 April 2024, the THAI for Palestine or the 'Thai People for the Rights of Palestinians' and its alliances were gathered in front of the Embassy of Germany to condemn the German government for supporting the harsh crackdown against pro-Palestine protesters. They also issued a statement addressing the Embassy of Germany in Thailand by stating that while our sisters and brothers in Palestine are subject to the heinous killing perpetrated by the Israeli army, governments have the humanitarian obligation to stop such deprivation of lives of the people who are also citizens of the world.

Apart from the three issues mentioned, public assemblies were organized on other issues including;

  • On 5 April2024 at the Bang Pu Municipality, Samut Prakan where the military conscription for 2024 was taking place, Netiwit Chotiphatphaisal, fourth year student of the Faculty of Political Science, Chulalongkorn University has gone there with three friends to organize a symbolic action and to read out a statement against military conscription.

  • Civil society organizations have formed a network called Call for All to launch a campaign and distribute leaflets with information about the application and election of the new batch of Senators on 12 Aprilat the Bangkok Bus Terminal (Mochit 2).

  • In addition, an activity was held to mark the 14th anniversary of the crackdown of the demonstrations led by the Red Shirt protesters in 2010 and to demand justice for the Red Shirt members. It was organized on 10 Aprilin two provinces including Bangkok at the 14 October Memorial and in Chiang Maiat the central canteen of the Chiang MaiUniversity.

  • The Network of Students and People for the Reform of Thailand (KPT) and the People's Center for the Protection of Monarchy (SPPS) organized a sit-in protest at the Chamai Maruchate Bridge by the Government House since 2 February 2024. Previously, they have notified Pol Col Wanchai Wongwanichsanan, Superintendent of the Dusit Police Station of their intent to organize a public assembly for one month and would call it off on 2 March 2024. Still, they continued their assembly to until 30 April 2024, and it did not appear that they would call it off. Their demands included (1) Mr. Thaksin must be brought back to prison, (2) concerned authorities that offered help to Mr. Thaksin must be held accountable, (3) the Ombudsman must explain why the Department of Corrects was quoted as saying that he had gone to see Mr. Thaksin on the 14th floor of the Police General Hospital, (4) personnel in justice affairs must show their stand on the case of Mr. Thaksin and whether it would damage the justice system or not, (5) 20,000 people are invited to sign a letter of petition to take action against the National Anti-Corruption Commission for their failure to hold to account those who had offered help to Mr. Thaksin,

Despite a decline in the number of public assemblies this month, the sustained issue for them is the demand of the right to bail for political activists or individuals who have been held for politically motivated charges. At the moment, the civic sector has proposed the People’s Amnesty Bill to the Parliament with more than 40,000 signatures of the supporters and the Bill has been vetted by the Parliament. Still, the fights will continue in the street all along including the daily Stand Stop Imprisonment every afternoon in front of the Ratchada Criminal Court.

On another issue concerning land, nature and environmental, it should be noted that most public assemblies have been organized according to the demands of concerned sectors. In other word, many problems previously raised by them were not promptly addressed or have yet to be addressed.

Harassment by the authorities

On 30 April, the Thai Lawyers for Human Rights (TLHR) published a report on harassment by the authorities in March-April 2024 including more than 24 reported cases of harassment. At least seven cases involved with an attempt to intervene or interfere public activities. Among the most common harassments were the officers simply approached or inquired about the houses or residence of some individuals in at least 14 cases. In at least seven cases, the authorities conducted surveillance. And in at least three cases, an attempt has been made to call and ask for information, or to summon a person to meet for an inquiry. Other attempts involve following activists or members of the public who used to participate in or were involved with the organization political public assemblies when there were visits made by royal family members in at least nine cases. And in at least three cases, activists were followed and harassed during the visits of VIPs.

For more information, please see the full report – Harassment Report (TLHR).