Noppadon's letter to UN sec gen

opinion January 29, 2014 00:00

Noppadon Pattama, former foreign minister, wrote a letter to UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon, to explain about political situation in Thailand.

Office of Mr Noppadon Pattama Member of Phue Thai Party

Former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Thailand

29 January 2014

His Excellency Mr Ban Ki-moon, Secretary General of the United Nations United Nations Headquarters

1st Ave. and 46th Street, New York, NY 10017 USA


With the upcoming general election in Thailand designated to take place on February 2nd, and the advanced election already taken place on January 26th, it appears that the People's Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC), under the leadership of Mr Suthep Thaugsuban and others political groups, which stage anti-government protest in Bangkok to force Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra to resign, have managed to disrupt and prevent citizens of Thailand from exercising their voting rights.

The PDRC demands that Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra quit so that it can set up the People Council, of which its members will be undemocratically appointed by Mr Suthep. He vowed and told his supporters to prevent and block the election to be held on February 2nd, by whatever means they can.

During the advanced election on January 26th, the PDRC and other related groups were trying to disrupt the advanced election by taking a number of uncivil actions including, among others, closing the doors of several polling stations by chains, forbidding voters to enter or depart the polling premises, laying down across the entrance to block access, threatening to use force and inflict bodily harm, all with the view to prevent voters from exercising their democratic rights. Such actions are criminal offences and violate both the Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The PDRC claims that its strategy is based on "non-violent civil disobedience." But I strongly disagree. On the contrary, some of the PDRC protesters have used violence such as trespassing, seizing and locking up government buildings; intimidating civil servants and preventing them from working; blocking public road and threatening the media to report the news as demanded. This is clearly not civil disobedience as the world knows it.

Therefore, I would like to inform you of such violations of laws and human rights and let you know that the PDRC actions destroy democratic process and appeal to you to support free and fair election in Thailand so that process of democratization in Thailand continues and 50 million Thais can determine the course of their future to ensure that Thailand remains a strong member of the UN and global community.

Accept, Excellency, the assurances of my highest consideration.

Noppadon Pattama

Member of Phue Thai Party and Former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Thailand