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Thailand’s Security Chief Wants to Extend State of Emergency Decree

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Thailand’s National Security Council chief on Wednesday proposed that the state of emergency decree be extended by another month to the end of August, citing increased uncertainty.

National Security Council secretary-general Gen Somsak Rungsita, said his committee would make the recommendation for the emergence decree to be extended to the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration.

According to Bangkok Post his proposal comes after authorities had to closely monitoring the situation following visits by a civd-19 infected Egyptian soldier in Rayong.

Also an infected daughter of a Sudanese diplomat in Bangkok.

Gen Somsak said the proposed extension was not political despite emerging rallies. To ease worries, his committee would propose that Section 9(2) of the emergency decree not be used. Above all to control any political gatherings.

Normal laws such as a law on public gatherings and the Communicable Disease Control Act would be used to deal with political gatherings, he added.

If approved, the extension of the Covid-19 state of emergency will be the fourth since it was first declared on April 3, for a total period of five months.

During an Sate of emergency, the prime minister may:

  • prohibit anyone from leaving home within a certain period
  • ban assembling at any place
  • ban the reporting, selling, distributing or disseminating of any media that have content that may frighten people or cause unrest, or that intentionally distorts news and information, in the emergency area or all over the country
  • prohibit the use of certain transport routes or vehicles
  • prohibit the use of certain buildings or places, or evacuate people from certain area

The law does not allow petitioning to the Administrative Court so people who want to take action against officials during an emergency must go to the Criminal Court.

Section 17 of the state of emergency decree also gives civil, criminal and disciplinary impunity to officials so long as they have acted reasonably.