Detained Watana faces 're-education' camp

Detained Watana faces 're-education' camp

Watana Muangsook protests his innocence as he is escorted by soldiers to the 11th Military Circle in Dusit district Monday. (Thanarak Khunton)
Watana Muangsook protests his innocence as he is escorted by soldiers to the 11th Military Circle in Dusit district Monday. (Thanarak Khunton)

Authorities have detained former Pheu Thai MP Watana Muangsook for allegedly making inappropriate political remarks and threatened to send him to a more intensive seven-day training course if he continues to criticise the military regime.

However, Mr Watana insisted he did nothing wrong when he spoke out against the draft charter and said that if he was not released by 3pm Monday officials would have violated his human rights.

He shouted the statement as he was escorted by soldiers to the 11th Military Circle in Bangkok's Dusit district.

The former commerce minister did not come out of the compound. Mr Watana is expected to be detained for some time. His legal adviser Nrinphong Chinaphak threatened to file a complaint against the military officials responsible for his detention. Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwon said Mr Watana may need to "attend a seven-day course if talks are unsuccessful" referring to so-called attitude adjustments at military camps.

The latest summons for Mr Watana, who has been called in by the military four times, was issued on April 13 after he wrote on his Facebook page that he is among opponents of the draft charter, which has been criticised for allowing members of the Senate to be picked by the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) as well as admitting military and police top brass to the Upper House.

Mr Watana also said as he was being taken away Monday that he had petitioned United Nations secretary-general Ban Ki-moon about his detention.

The military said in a statement that Mr Watana flouted an NCPO order, and committed an act deemed harmful to social order. The military has said that it feared new political conflicts could erupt if people are allowed to express divisive opinions.


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