Thai activists face arrest following seventh delay of democratic elections

Thai activists face arrest following seventh delay of democratic elections

The National Council for Peace and Order military junta has, for the seventh time since its ascent in 2014, rescheduled

thai-democracy-activists

Photo: AFP

The National Council for Peace and Order military junta has, for the seventh time since its ascent in 2014, rescheduled general elections for a return to democracy. Nearly five years since Thailand’s last civilian government, this delay coincides with the junta’s enacting increasingly harsh measures to curb popular dissent.

Pro-democracy activists have been arrested for challenging this decision as the junta cracks down on other civil liberties, including freedom of assembly and speech criticising the regime in public or the media. Additionally, the junta has begun charging activists who organised protests in 2014 and 2017 for acts of sedition in an attempt to quell further unrest. While any protests in the coming months are not expected to rival the size of the 2010 anti-corruption protests that roiled the country, they will likely challenge the stability of one of Southeast Asia’s strongest economies.

Despite repeated assurances of elections, expect the government to continue combatting the large-scale organised domestic opposition and once again diminish hope of return to civilian government.

Start your day with an open-source intelligence briefing. Download The Daily Brief app.