Release Somyot Pruksakasemsuk Immediately

Prime Minister Mr. Abhisit Vejjajiva

c/o Government House, Pitsanulok Road,

Dusit District, 10300, Bangkok

Thailand

Release Somyot Pruksakasemsuk Immediately

Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM) is extremely concerned and calls upon you for the immediate release of Somyot Pruksakasemsuk who was arrested on 30th April 2011 and is currently being held at Klong Prem Central Prison, in Bangkok.

We understand that Somyot was arrested on a charge of defaming, insulting and threatening the King, Queen and heir apparent (Section112 of the Penal Code) a charge which he fully denies. He also was not aware that any arrest warrant had previously been issued and strongly denies any claim that he resisted arrest.

We are concerned about the current state of human rights and democracy in Thailand, where even peaceful and legal methods to express one’s views are suppressed and denied.

We believe that the country should move towards a genuine reconciliation in good faith and intention from all sides. Therefore any dissident voice should not be brutally suppressed, particularly prior to a national election. The arrest of Somyot for his peaceful activity will deter this process.

We further understand that the Criminal Court agreed with the Department of Special Investigation (DSI) to extend the detention of Somyot for another twelve days, something we believe to be an unacceptable abuse of Somyot’s human rights. Please urgently respond to this request for the immediate release of Somyot to allow him to organise his response to the charges against him.

Sincerely,

K. Arumugam

Chairperson

SUARAM