Symbolic Activity Held at Women’s Prison Demanding Right to Bail for Political Activists
September 18, 1:30 pm – Bangkok, Thailand
Representatives from Amnesty International Thailand and the Human Rights Lawyers Center gathered today at the Central Correctional Institution for Women to participate in a symbolic expression activity. The event, titled “Do my friends have rights?”, was organized to raise awareness about the case of Warunee, one of the prisoners accused under Section 112 and currently on a hunger strike. The activists demanded the right to bail for political activists and individuals detained during legal proceedings.
The participants held signs advocating for the right to bail and blew out a birthday cake for Warunee, whose lawyer stated that she had been charged with defaming King Rama X and insulting religion online. The charges against her include Section 112, Section 206, and an offense under Section 14(3) of the Computer Crime Act. Warunee had received a reduced sentence of 1 year and 6 months after pleading guilty to the charges.
Warunee’s younger sister expressed her concern for her sister’s health and hoped that she would be granted bail soon. She urged Warunee to stay strong and fight for her right to bail, assuring her that the family would support her throughout the process. The sister questioned why other cases more serious than Warunee’s had been granted bail, while her sister had not.
The symbolic activity aimed to highlight the importance of the right to bail for all prisoners fighting their cases, not just political activists. The participants, led by Amnesty International Thailand, called for the release of prisoners of conscience and the restoration of the right to bail pending trial. They also called on the Department of Corrections to ensure the protection of prisoners’ human rights and access to proper medical care, complying with minimum UN standards for the treatment of prisoners.
Amnesty International Thailand’s Director, Mrs. Piyanuch Kotsan, addressed the new government, appealing for their attention to the demands of prisoners and their commitment to upholding human rights. She emphasized the importance of granting the right to bail to individuals on trial and dropping charges against those exercising their rights to freedom of expression and protest.
As an organization dedicated to human rights, Amnesty International stressed the principle of treating everyone equally and fairly under the law. The organization cited both the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Thai Constitution to emphasize that every accused person should be considered innocent until proven guilty.
The hope is that the new government will take these events seriously and ensure that the right to bail is granted to all individuals on trial, regardless of their political affiliation. By doing so, they would demonstrate a commitment to human rights and equal treatment for all.
Today (September 18) at 1:30 pm at the Central Correctional Institution for Women. Bangkok Special Prison Representatives of Amnesty International Network “Amnesty International Thailand” and Human Rights Lawyers Center Appointments were made to participate in symbolic expression activities. “Do my friends have rights?” on the birthday of Warunee, one of those accused in the Section 112 case who went on a hunger strike. Demand the right to bail for political activists and people detained while fighting legal proceedings. This activity will include holding signs to campaign for the right to bail. and various calls and also blowing a birthday cake for “Warunee” The lawyer for ‘Warunee’ said that she is accused of being the one who posts statements online about King Rama X and the Buddha Emerald. Currently, Warunee is being prosecuted on three charges: 1. Section 112 for defaming the King, 2. Section 206 for insulting religion, and 3. An offense under Section 14(3) of the Computer Crime Act for using illegal information about security and terrorism into the computer system The Court of First Instance sentenced her to 3 years imprisonment, but after pleading guilty, the sentence was reduced by half to 1 year and 6 months imprisonment. Warunee has been in jail since June 28, 2023. She is one of those accused in the Section 112 Case who went on a hunger strike. restrict water intake to claim bail rights while fighting the case
Warunee’s younger sister revealed that what she hopes for her sister’s birthday is The fact that Warunee has the right to bail Because she is worried and afraid that her sister would go on hunger strike in the prison for a long time. There will be serious long-term health effects. Today, she hopes that older sister Warunee will be patient and not give up or something along the way. Fighting for the right to bail Although I can’t help but worry about the insecurity in prison. But when it’s something that Warunee chooses As a younger sister, she wanted Warunee to be patient. As for the family, they will help outside and not go anywhere. and he will always be by your side until you are free. “I want him to get bail. We feel that sometimes we have rights like other cases. Because the case was more serious than this, he was even granted bail. I don’t understand why my sister was not granted bail. Although he always reported a debt, he was never absent, never thought of escaping. Why did the court reason that he was afraid that his brother would escape? To be honest, we don’t understand the reason. What about giving the right to bail? I feel this is not fair to our sister.” Carrying out symbolic activities by holding a birthday party for Warunee this time The aim is to reflect the right to bail for all prisoners who are fighting their cases. It’s not just political activists alone. What Warunee’s sister hopes for the most is that her sister will be released. or be entitled to bail to fight the case outside prison as soon as possible And if Warunee is released, Warunee’s sister and the family want the parties involved to make a written commitment. To guarantee the safety of Warunee’s life that he will not be attacked, tortured, or kidnapped when he comes out of prison.
“This birthday, I want my sister to be free. It would be a very nice birthday present for him. Because on our last birthday He apologized to us. This year has taken us nowhere. because he had to be stuck in jail When it’s his birthday We want to take him out to eat or go do whatever he wants to do. It would probably be great. If this request is true.”
Mrs. Piyanuch Kotsan, Director of Amnesty International Thailand said that there are currently activists who are prisoners in prison coming out to demand the right to bail. Reject the charges immediately and unconditionally. and restore the right to bail pending trial in court. Of these, ‘Warunee’ is one of those accused who demanded that the justice process restore the right to bail while fighting the case.
The Director of Amnesty Thailand addressed the new government led by Prime Minister Settha Thavisin that Amnesty has 3 requirements regarding the rights of prisoners in prison and those who are prosecuted for exercising their rights of expression and protest: 1. Demand the right to bail for Warunee who is currently on hunger strike including other prisoners who are prisoners of conscience 2. The Department of Corrections must ensure that it takes good care of the human rights of prisoners and respects them. and ensure that everyone has access to good and timely medical care. Complies with minimum UN standards for the treatment of prisoners. (Mandela Rules) and 3. Drop charges and prosecutions against people who exercise their rights to freedom of expression and protest. Release prisoners immediately and without conditions
“We really hope that the new government will not ignore events that happen in prisons and other prisoners, not just prisoners of conscience, and will take their demands seriously. Especially granting the right to bail to accused persons who are on trial. And relevant parties must make human rights an equal issue for everyone.
The Director of Amnesty reiterated that the heart of human rights It means that everyone is treated equally and fairly and that everyone is subject to the law which uses the same standards. speak out about ‘Right to bail’ because this is a fundamental right that Article 11 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) states that ‘every human being is innocent until proven guilty’, consistent with the Thai Constitution , Article 29, paragraph 2, in Having stated that if it is a criminal case, it is first assumed that the person accused or the defendant is not guilty. This means before there is a final judgement. You cannot treat that person as if they have wronged her. But at the moment it is found that this matter has not been taken seriously.
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