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13 political activists who led thousands of protesters to the German Embassy in Bangkok last October have met with police and prosecutors in the capital. They face charges of violating section 112 of the Criminal Code for the October 26 rally at the embassy. The aim of the gathering was to submit a petition calling on the German government to ascertain if His Majesty the King was conducting state business from Germany. Section 112 of the Criminal Code is also known as the lèse majesté law, which prohibits criticism or defamation of the Monarchy. Violators could face up to 15 years in prison.

During yesterday’s meeting at Thung Maha Mek police station, officers were on duty in front of the station, to bolster security, while others in plain clothes photographed those who’d turned up in a show of solidarity with the 13 activists. The rally at the German Embassy was organised by the pro-democracy group, Khana Ratsadorn. The group’s leaders face multiple other charges in addition to lèse majesté.

One protest leaders, named as Atthapol Buaphat, aka, “”Khru Yai”, says the group is waiting to see if prosecutors press ahead with charges. He says they have provided additional handwritten evidence to police and asked officers to question more witnesses. Another leader, Patsaravalee Tanakitvibulpon, says she just received a summons issued 2 months after an October 14 rally. She adds that the resurgence in Covid-19 means pro-democracy activists are pausing their political action but vows that it will resume again at some point.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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