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Thailand State of Emergency



Thailand State of Emergency

Thailand’s city capital—Bangkok—had been placed under a state of emergency from April to December of the previous year (2010).


This drastic action was done in response to the numerous political demonstrations that beleaguered Thailand from March to May of that year.


These political demonstrations have turned into violent riots, which resulted to hundreds of deaths and thousands of injuries.



Casualties of the said riots included not just the protesters of both parties, but also innocent people like civilians, reporters and journalists.


The political and civil unrest had become too aggressive and atrocious that the Thailand government was forced to put Bangkok under a state of emergency.

The inclusion of foreign nationals in the list of casualties didn’t leave Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva government much of a choice but to undertake such action.


Thailand State of Emergency

The Prime Minister made the announcement amidst violent rallies and cries for his resignation by the so-called “Red Shirt” movement last April 2010.


The rally involved thousand supporters of the United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship (UDD), who marched and broke into the parliament.


The rally lasted for several days until the state of emergency was declared. Prime Minister Abhisit gave a televised address, telling the people that the declaration aims to restore peace and order in Thailand.


Added controlling power of the government was deemed necessary in assuaging the protesters who were no longer peaceful in conducting their protests. The state of emergency declaration gave officials the authority to question, search, arrest and detain suspicious individuals without a court order for thirty (30) days.


It also restricted assemblies or gatherings that may turn into violent demonstrations. That was the fourth time that Bangkok together with neighboring provinces was put in a state of emergency since 2008.

After eight (8) months of rather peaceful life since the state of emergency was imposed, the Thai government decided it was time to lift the decree on the 22nd of December 2010. But despite this decision, the government did not relax its grip on the extra powers that the state of emergency provided, believing that it is still necessary to control the anti-government parties. The government believes that a strict security law, although less severe, is still needed.

State of Emergency in Thailand


Under the new Internal Security Act, which replaced the decree, the Thai government maintains its power to detain suspects without the need for a court order and without charge but only for a week. Curfews and a few restrictions are still enforced as well.



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