Thailand Morning News For April 12

Thailand Morning News For April 12
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Thailand morning news
New media bill threatens “unlicensed” journalists with imprisonment
On 10 April 2017 Maj Gen Pisit Pao-In, chairman of the media subcommittee of the junta’s National Reform Steering Assembly (NRSA), announced that under the new Media Bill media workers who do not possess official licenses to work could face two years imprisonment, or a fine of 60,000 baht, or both.
– Prachatai English

Cabinet announces two additional public holidays
The cabinet on Tuesday declared July 28 which marks the birthday of HM King Maha Vajiralongkorn Bodindradebayavarangkun and October 13 which marks the passing of HM King Bhumibol as two additional public holidays.
– Thai PBS

PM asks why some politicians are so afraid of Section 44
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-ocha questioned why some politicians are so afraid of Section 44 of the interim constitution while the general public are not affected by the special powers vested by the special law.
– Thai PBS

Seven years later no solemn commemoration, no marker, and, in the present political climate, no formal ceremony was staged to remember 25 lives lost near the Democracy Monument in deadly clashes between security forces, armed militants and protesters.
– Khaosod English

Ms Yingluck to appeal for a stay of execution of her assets seizure order
Former prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra plans to appeal against the Central Administrative Court’s ruling rejecting her request for a stay of execution of Finance Ministry’s order to seize her assets estimated at 35 billion baht to compensate for the huge loss from the rice pledging scheme.
– Thai PBS

Thailand’s Digital Ventures invests in geolocation data firm Pulse iD
Digital Ventures, a fintech-focussed venture capital subsidiary of Siam Commercial Bank (SCB), has invested in Hong Kong-based geolocation data startup Pulse iD, the bank said on Tuesday.
– Deal Street Asia

Section 44 to lever international schools in EEC
The government agreed Tuesday to invoke the powerful Section 44 of the interim charter to speed up the development of the much-touted Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC).
– Bangkok Post

Will new Constitution bring back political stability to Thailand?
Thailand has taken the first step back towards a democratically elected government with the enactment of a new Constitution – the 20th since 1932 – but the jury is still out on whether political stability will return to the kingdom.
– The Straits Times

Term limits would be imposed on the thousands of subdistrict headmen nationwide if a Monday proposal by the junta-appointed reform assembly becomes law.
– Khaosod English

More than 36,000 vehicles ordered at Bangkok Motor Show
A total of 36,093 orders were placed for new vehicles at the 38th Bangkok International Motor Show (BIMS) that ended on Sunday, according to a revised tally by show organisers.
– The Nation

Students to man vehicle checkpoints
About 20,000 vocational students and teachers are being stationed at 251 vehicle checkpoints nationwide over Songkran this week in a bid to curb traffic accidents, which spike dramatically over the festive…
– Bangkok Post

Thailand warned of changes in Japan’s agricultural policies
A senior official in Thailand’s embassy in Tokyo has warned the Kingdom to prepare for the impacts of Japan’s plan to cut around 400 Thai agricultural products from the Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) two years from now.
– The Nation

Clarity sought on EEC administration
THE CABINET yesterday approved in principle the State Council’s draft bill for the Eastern Economic Corridor development project but could not agree on the structure of the EEC’s administration, said Kobsak Pootrakool, vice minister for the PM’s Office Minister.
– The Nation

DSI hunts 2,400 members of ‘Helmet Gang’
The Department of Special Investigation (DSI) will seek court warrants for the arrest of some 2,400 people suspected of being involved in the country’s biggest loan-shark network, deputy permanent secretary for justice Dusadee Arayawuthi said Tuesday.
– Bangkok Post

Commerce Ministry to hold “Back to School” campaign
The Ministry of Commerce, together with various manufacturers, retailers, and department stores, will hold a back-to-school campaign from April 27th – May 14th, offering 20 – 80% discounts on uniforms, stationary and other school supplies.
– Pattaya Mail

287 sex offenders nabbed
Almost 300 suspects on sex-related offences have been arrested nationwide with more than 15,000 still on the run, according to the Command and Control Operation Centre.
– Bangkok Post

Govt rejects BRN talks demands
THE BARISAN Revolusi Nasional Melayu Patani (BRN) separatist group is not involved in the ongoing process to establish “safety zones” in the deep South as the group had not participated in the peace talks, Thailand’s negotiating chief Aksara Kerdphol said yesterday.
– The Nation

Travel agent strands hundreds at Suvarnabhumi
Police are gathering evidence before taking action against a travel agent that spoiled a trip to Japan by about 1,000 tourists left at Suvarnabhumi airport with no planes to go.
– Bangkok Post

From love to fear: The rise of King Vajiralongkorn
On April 6, King Vajiralongkorn signed Thailand’s 20th constitution. Charters have come and gone in the country since the end of absolute monarchy in 1932, often without much woe or jubilation. While the new constitution was met with similar general apathy, the unprecedented journey it went through offers a rare insight into the secretive new reign of King Vajiralongkorn and his developing leadership style.
– Al Jazeera

Legalization of marijuana in Thailand: possibility or just wishful thinking
In 2003, Thailand declared a War on Drugs under the leadership of Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra. The war resulted in the deaths of 2,873 people in one year. Prisoners related to drugs cases soared to more than 100,000 a year. Unfortunately, those people were only drug retailers, children transporting drugs or workers using drugs to help them work.
– Prachatai English


Feature photo John Le Fevre
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John Le Fevre

Thailand editor at AEC News Today

John is an Australian national with more than 40 years experience as a journalist, photographer, videographer, and copy editor.

He has spent extensive periods of time working in Africa and throughout Southeast Asia, with stints in the Middle East, the USA, and England.

He has covered major world events including Operation Desert Shield/ Storm, the 1991 pillage in Zaire, the 1994 Rwanda genocide, the 1999 East Timor independence unrest, the 2004 Asian tsunami, and the 2009, 2010, and 2014 Bangkok political protests.

In 1995 he was a Walkley Award finalist, the highest awards in Australian journalism, for his coverage of the 1995 Zaire (now Democratic Republic of Congo) Ebola outbreak.

Prior to AEC News Today he was the deputy editor and Thailand and Greater Mekong Sub-region editor for The Establishment Post, predecessor of Asean Today.

In the mid-80s and early 90s he owned JLF Promotions, the largest above and below the line marketing and PR firm servicing the high-technology industry in Australia. It was sold in 1995.

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