The Foreign Correspondents’ Club of China is appalled to learn that our colleagues, the entire board of the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Thailand, have been accused of committing lese majeste, a crime which could carry a prison sentence of up to 15 years.
Police will investigate the 13-member board after a complaint was filed in connection with the selling of a DVD of a speech given at the FCCT by a former government minister. This speech was given two years ago.
This is a worrying development, because Thailand’s law on lese majeste is more and more used to restrict freedom of expression. Board member and BBC correspondent Jonathan Head has faced similar accusations in the past.
“The FCCC calls on the Thai authorities to respect freedom of the press and ensure that journalists can work there free of restraints,” said FCCC President Scott McDonald.