Media organisations call on government to obey court order on free speech

Following a Civil Court ruling against PM Prayut Chan-o-cha, Thai media organisations are calling on the government to abide by the court’s decision. Last Friday, the court ruled that the PM had overstepped his authority in banning the dissemination of news that could create public fear. In its ruling, the court found that the ban was too vague and therefore an infringement of people’s rights and freedoms.

The court was responding to a petition from 12 online media organisations and human rights lawyers, who accused the PM of threatening the accuracy of media reporting and freedom of speech.

In response to the ruling, 6 media organisations are urging the government to comply with the court’s order. According to a Bangkok Post report, the National Press Council of Thailand, the News Broadcasting Council of Thailand, the Thai Journalists Association, the Thai Broadcast Journalists Association, the Online News Providers Association, and the National Union of Journalists, Thailand say the government must also consider if other regulations implemented during the Covid-19 crisis might also infringe on free speech.

Deputy PM Wissanu Krea-ngam says the government will comply with the court’s ruling but refused to say if the PM’s attempt to introduce the ban was a mistake.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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