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Red shirts in Japan ‘plot’ against coup

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  • Red shirts in Japan ‘plot’ against coup


    Wassana Nanuam
    6/09/2014

    Letter to Abe details 'torture' under regime

    The National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) is monitoring a group of Thai anti-coup activists in Japan amid allegations they are planning a campaign against the junta.

    Deputy army chief Gen Udomdej Sitabutr, who is also deputy defence minister, told an NCPO meeting Friday that the activists had attempted to submit a letter denouncing the coup to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

    The letter is said to have explained their opposition to the coup and detailed alleged torture and physical assaults against people who had been detained by the military junta, Gen Udomdej said.

    A source in Japan said a group of around 26 Thais yesterday gathered outside the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs holding placards protesting against the coup and the use of martial law in Thailand.

    They are believed to be supporters of the red-shirt United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD).

    The group tried to submit their letter to the prime minister but no representatives of the Japanese government came out to meet them, the source said.

    The activists then moved on to the United Nations University, where a UN representative came out to receive the statement from them, the source added.

    Headquartered in Tokyo, the university is the academic and research arm of the United Nations with diplomatic status as a UN institution.

    Gen Udomdej reportedly told the NCPO meeting that a number of anti-coup movements have also been reemerging in Thailand since the new cabinet was unveiled. The dissenters are yet to adopt aggressive tactics, he said.

    He suggested that the movements are keeping a low profile because martial law is still in place, claiming this may explain why calls to lift the special law are being made.

    Gen Udomdej warned the NCPO's opponents intend to spread false rumours about the situation in Thailand, instructing security officials and the Foreign Ministry to correct this misinformation with the international community.

    If anti-coup activists escalate their activities, the regional armies will have to step up measures to contain the situation, he said.

    However, all measures to contain anti-coup groups must be in line with Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha's policy to minimise unnecessary conflict for the NCPO, Gen Udomdej said.

    He called on parties concerned to undertake public relations activities to firmly convey the fact that the NCPO has never used force or torture against people detained under martial law.

    Meanwhile, NCPO deputy chief and navy commander Adm Narong Pipathanasai, who also serves as education minister, said the authorities are considering whether martial law should be lifted in some parts of the country.

    Martial law is likely to be revoked in violence-free tourist destinations first, he said.
    Despite this, Adm Narong admitted he could not yet confirm whether the law would be lifted in certain provinces, tourist spots or nationwide. A clear decision should come after the cabinet meeting on Tuesday, he said.

    Areas most likely to see the law revoked include tourist destinations including Chon Buri's Pattaya, Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Rayong and some of the southern provinces.

    These locations were also among the first to see the post-coup curfew lifted before night-time restrictions were removed across the country in mid-June.

    Gen Prayuth last Tuesday promised to relax martial law when the time was right, now that an interim government has been installed.

    bangkokpost.com
    http://thailandchatter.com/showthrea...ll=1#post45112
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