Activists give minister jail 'wish list'
The three detained anti-government protest leaders called on the government to ensure their well-being by granting a number of special requests during a weekend visit by the justice minister.
Access to books and individual cells were on the wish lists of Panupong "Mike" Jadnok, Parit "Penguin" Chiwarak and Panusaya "Rung" Sithijirawattanakul when they met Justice Minister Somsak Thepsutin on Sunday.
They were worried about being unable to study ahead of their exams during the visit in which the minister was pictured in the media sitting with the detainees, though he insisted they did not talk about politics.
Ms Panusaya, who is being held at the Central Women's Correctional Institution, had also had a request for a private cell denied.
As for Mr Parit's requests, he told Mr Somsak that he wanted to read books authored by the late left-wing intellectual Jit Phumisak and that he was concerned that he would not be able to sit his upcoming exams.
During his one-on-one with the minister, Mr Panupong had urged the government to separate prisoners pending trial from convicted criminals, according to the source.
Mr Parit and Mr Panupong are being detained at Bangkok Remand Prison.
Noraset Nanongtoom, a lawyer from the Thai Lawyers for Human Rights Centre, posted on the group's Facebook that Mr Parit had told him that living conditions in the prison were "tolerable".
On Saturday, the Court of Appeal upheld a lower court decision denying temporary release on bail for the three activists. They were charged with incitement and sedition under Section 116 of the Criminal Code for their roles in the Sept 19-20 demonstrations at Thammasat University and Sanam Luang.
Learn from listening
- activists (noun): people who take part in activities that are intended to achieve political or social change, especially someone who is a member of an organisation - นักกิจกรรม
- bail: money that is given to a court when someone is allowed to stay out of prison until their trial. If they do not return for the trial, the court keeps the money - เงินประกัน; การประกันตัว
- cell: a small room where a prisoner is kept - ห้องขังนักโทษ
- denied: a refusal to allow somebody to have something - ปฎิเสธ, ไม่ยอมรับ
- detained: kept in a place and not allowed to leave - กักตัว ควบคุมตัวหรือฝากขัง
- detainee: someone who is kept in prison - ผู้ที่ถูกกักขัง คุมขัง
- incite: to encourage people to be violent or commit crimes by making them angry or excited - ยั่วยุ ยุยงให้เกิดความรุนแรง
- individual: relating to or involving a single, separate person or thing - แต่ละบุคคล
- intellectual (noun): a person who is well educated and enjoys activities in which they have to think seriously about things - ผู้มีปัญญาสูง
- left-wing (adj): the part of a political party or system whose members are most in favour of social change - ฝ่ายซ้าย (กลุ่มหรือพรรคการเมือง)
- sedition: fighting against the government; rebellion, revolt, revolution, agitation - การปลุกระดมฝูงชนให้ต่อต้านรัฐบาล, การช่วยก่อความไม่สงบ, คำพูดปลุกระดม, การสนับสนุนพวกกบฏ
- tolerable: acceptable, but not good -