Sunday, September 12, 2010

Thai Censorship

Austrailian Broadcasting Corporation's (ABC) show "Foreign Correspondent" broadcast feature on the controversial nature of Thai politics and the role of the monarchy. In Thailand, any negative or critical coverage of the King would certainly land any journalist, foreign or domestic, in jail for a very long time. After visiting Thailand, warnings were very explicit especially within travel advisories posted to DFAIT's website..
"It is a criminal offence in Thailand to make any derogatory or insulting comments about the King or other members of the Royal family. Any person making such comments is liable to arrest and prosecution." 
- Laws & Customs, Department of Foreign Affairs & International Trade
So, under threat of prosecution and imprisonment, the film was incredibly difficult to produce. In fact, the journalists involved operated "without any involvement of the ABC Bureau in Bangkok or the full knowledge of any Thai national" as it might risk compromising both the story and/or the future of ABC's presence in Thailand.

The video could not be posted to ABC's website, so it was leaked to Wikileaks.

Here is the link: ABC Foreign Correspondent video report on Thailand

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