Government targets BBC Thai

Government targets BBC Thai

The government plans to take legal action against the Thai team of British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) for its recent online report on the profile of His Majesty King Maha Vajiralongkorn Bodindradebayavarangkun.

Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwon said on Tuesday the target was people behind the report on the BBC Thai website. He referred to the report last Friday after His Majesty the King accepted the invitation from Parliament to accede to the throne on the previous day.

Gen Prawit confirmed he ordered authorities to investigate into the matter. ''Anyone who have broken the law and caused damage must be dealt with,'' he said.

Asked whether the government will seek cooperation from foreign news agencies which have reported issues deemed sensitive in Thailand, Gen Prawit said authorities have been monitoring them and check the accuracy of such reports.

The links to the stories both in Thai and English on the BBC and BBC Thai websites respectively were not accessible on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Links to the website home page and Facebook page of BBCThai were open and operating as usual as of Wednesday morning.

Police came to the BBC Thai office at Maneeya Building on Phloenchit Road in Bangkok on Tuesday and found it closed.

BBC Thai was first launched on Facebook in August 2014 following the coup three months earlier. The news outlet took a full-form Thai-language website last month.

A security source at the Technology Crime Suppression Division under the Royal Thai Police said the division was gathering evidence regarding the BBC Thai report, which could be deemed violating Section 112 of the Criminal Code, or the lese majeste law, and the Computer Crime Act.

Police on Saturday arrested anti-coup activist Jatupat "Pai Dao Din" Boonpattararaksa allegedly for sharing on Facebook the controversial BBC report. The 25-year-old Khon Kaen University student was later allowed bail to sit his final exam. 


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