The BBC has this story today:
New finding on cameraman’s death during Thai protests
Investigators in Thailand have reversed an earlier finding into the killing of a Reuters cameraman during red-shirt anti government protests last April.
Officials from the Department of Special Investigations (DSI) now say Hiro Muramoto was shot by an AK47, a gun not used by Thai soldiers.
An earlier leaked report blamed the military for shooting the cameraman.
Critics say the investigations into how 89 people died in last year’s protests have been hurt by interference.
Hiro Muramoto, a Japanese cameraman working for Reuters, was killed on 10 April last year.
Thai soldiers were trying to clear many thousands of anti-government protesters, known as red-shirts, from the streets of Bangkok.
They failed – five soldiers died in the attempt and 20 civilians.
Mr Muramoto died from a bullet through his chest.
An earlier finding by the DSI had concluded this was fired by an M16 from an army-held position that night. Witnesses from the scene agreed.
The military was unhappy with that finding and army sources have told reporters that a military officer was assigned to help the DSI’s investigation.
Photo: Reuters via BBC.
A Reuters story from yesterday: Exclusive: Thai PM says has the edge in close election:
Thailand’s prime minister said on Wednesday his Democrat Party would have the edge in a mid-year election but he would probably need to form a coalition to govern, signaling a close and potentially volatile poll.
In an interview with Reuters, 46-year-old, Oxford University-educated Abhisit Vejjajiva said he expected the election to bring stability to the troubled country, regardless of who wins, and an alliance with smaller parties would probably pave the way for him to form a government.
“We are looking at some time around the first half of this year,” Abhisit said of the election, his firmest indication yet of the timing for a poll. “It is a close election like last time, except that we are slightly ahead. The latest polls show we are ahead in all polls except the northeast.”
Thailand Court Grants Bail for Red Shirt Leaders
A Thai court has granted bail for seven leaders of the antigovernment “Red Shirt” movement detained after mass protests and riots ended in May.
Thailand’s red-shirt leaders freed on bail
Seven leaders of Thailand’s “red-shirt” protest movement have been freed on bail after nine months in jail on terrorism charges.
Separately another red-shirt, Surachai Damwattananusorn, has been arrested on charges of insulting the monarchy.
The government has meanwhile extended implementation of the Internal Security Act for another month.
It is trying to contain continuing protests by both the red-shirts and the nationalist “yellow-shirt” protesters.
The decision to release all seven red-shirt leaders and a protest guard was a surprise. At most, two leaders were expected to be freed.
There are also stories from Reuters and Bloomberg.
I have a story in today’s Wall Street Journal about Gaggan, a new Indian molecular gastronomy restaurant here in Bangkok. The piece is online and also appears in print in today’s Asia edition.
A few more items to pass along:
(Image: BBC News.)
That’s the title of an op-ed in today’s Bangkok Post by Thitinan Pongsudhirak. Thailand watchers won’t want to miss it.