(THAILAND, December 2022)—On December 16, 2022, The U.N. Working Group on Business and Human Rights published a news release urging the Thai government to prevent the judicial harassment of human rights defenders by businesses, specifically citing cases brought by Thammakaset Company Limited against former and current Fortify Rights team members and others.
In the news release, the Working Group stated: “The cases filed by companies, such as Thammakaset Company Limited, against human rights defenders are a clear example of businesses abusing the legal system in order to censor, intimidate, and silence criticism through SLAPPs as a method of judicial harassment.”
The Working Group further highlighted its efforts to address judicial harassment by Thammakaset, including through the Special Procedures’ communication procedure and meetings with company representatives.However, the Working Group expressed disheartenment “to see that the company continues to flagrantly ignore the advice of the Working Group by continuing to persecute those who peacefully defend human rights.”
Fortify Rights’s Senior Thailand Human Rights Specialist Puttanee Kangkun and former Communications Associate Thanaporn Saleephol along with Thai human rights defender Angkhana Neelapaijit are currently facing multiple counts of criminal defamation brought by Thammakaset. Since 2016, Fortify Rights has been actively involved in bringing attention to the series of cases brought by Thammakaset, including through more than 30 news releases, eight films, social media materials, and private meetings with Thai officials and members of the diplomatic community. Fortify Rights has also secured more than US$50,000 to support human rights defenders affected by these cases.