Media demand less police violence at protests after reporters hit by rubber bullets
Six media associations have demanded that police limit the level of violence used against pro-democracy protests after reporters again complained of suffering rubber-bullet injuries.
The joint statement was issued on Wednesday by the National Press Council, News Broadcasting Council, Thai Journalists Association, Thai Broadcast Journalists Association, Society for Online News Provider Association and National Union of Journalists Thailand.
The statement said members of the media had been injured by rubber bullets shot by officers during political demonstrations on July 18 and last Saturday (August 7). The associations said a complaint was lodged with the Civil Court, which on Tuesday ordered police to be more careful during crowd-control operations.
The statement added that representatives of the media associations had visited protest sites on August 7 and found several people unrelated to the protest were injured by the police.
The associations demanded that police strictly follow the Civil Court’s order, be patient, and limit violent measures as much as possible to ensure the safety of press members and protesters.
They added that before launching crowd control measures, police should give warnings to demonstrators, in line with international principles.
The six associations also suggested there should be a forum for communication between police and demonstrators to avoid violence.