Thai Civil Court to consider petitions challenging legitimacy of state of emergency


Thailand’s Civil Court has accepted, for consideration, petitions challenging the legitimacy declaration of a state of emergency, issued by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha last week, and for the court to revoke the announcement.

The three petitions were submitted by Democrat MP Watchara Petchthong and a retired chief judge of the Pattaya court, Pheu Thai MP Cholanan Srikaew and three associates and by the anti-government Free Youth Movement.

The petition filed with the Civil Court by Watchara and the former judge, Mr. Kasem Supasith also demanded that legal action be taken against the Prime Minister and Pol Gen Suwat Jaengyodsook, the national police chief and head of the Joint Command for the Administration of the Emergency Situation.

Mr. Kasem told the media that, he filed a petition yesterday seeking an official copy of the ruling by the Civil Court. It will be used as evidence to back a petition, to be filed with the Constitutional Court, to initiate legal action against the Prime Minister for allegedly violating the Constitution regarding the declaration of a state of emergency.

A number of students, from Thammasat and Chulalongkorn universities, gathered at the Civil Court this morning to hear thecourt’s ruling.

Pheu Thai MP Cholanan Srikaew and his lawyer also showed up. He told the media that he expects the court to issue a stay on the enforcement of the rules set out in the state of emergency announcement.

He further said that the Prime Minister’s promise, to lift the state of emergency soon, came too late, adding that his appeal for the protesters to take a step back is also useless, because the situation has already moved beyond that point

The Civil Court is scheduled to rule on the petitions this afternoon (Thursday).


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