Thailand: Investigate grenade attack on anti-government protesters

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The Thai authorities must bring to justice those responsible for killing at least three people in this morning’s grenade and gunfire attack on an anti-government protest camp in Thailand’s capital Bangkok, Amnesty International said.

“Today’s appalling attack is the latest escalation of political violence. Authorities must launch a thorough investigation, in accordance with Thailand’s international human rights obligations,” said Rupert Abbott, Amnesty International’s Deputy Asia Pacific Director.

“A failure to investigate the attack and hold those responsible accountable would signal that impunity rules in Thailand and risk an increasingly vicious cycle of retaliatory violence. It would also fly in the face of victims’ and their families’ right to justice.”

This morning’s attack, when unidentified gunmen stormed an anti-government protest camp nearby Bangkok’s Democracy Monument, has left at least three people dead and more than 20 injured.

It comes as Thailand’s political crisis deepens, with protestors holding mass rallies and entering official buildings in a bid to bring down the government.

“Political leaders on all sides have a responsibility to ensure that the situation does not spiral out of control. They must make it crystal clear to their supporters that human rights abuses, including on grounds of political opinion, are unacceptable, and they should cooperate with investigations into any such abuses,” said Rupert Abbott.

“Security forces must ensure that protesters are given adequate protection, and that the rights to life, peaceful assembly and freedom of expression are respected and protected.”

There have been numerous incidents of political violence in Bangkok this year, resulting in dozens of deaths and hundreds of injuries. Amnesty International is calling for prompt, thorough and impartial investigations into all such incidents.

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