News / Asia

Thai Court: Troops Killed Italian Reporter

Anti-government ''red shirt'' protesters hold pictures of killed friends, relatives and late Italian photographer Fabio Polenghi, Bangkok's, May 19, 2011.
Anti-government ''red shirt'' protesters hold pictures of killed friends, relatives and late Italian photographer Fabio Polenghi, Bangkok's, May 19, 2011.
Reuters
An Italian photo-journalist who was shot dead in Bangkok while taking pictures of a military crackdown on an anti-government protest in 2010 was killed by a bullet fired by a soldier, a Thai court ruled on Wednesday.
 
Fabio Polenghi, 48, was killed on the morning of May 19 when troops moved in to disperse "red shirt" supporters of former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, who had been camped in the center of the capital for weeks, demanding an early election.
 
"The court ruled that orders given by Prime Minister Abhisit and Deputy Prime Minister Suthep that day led to Fabio's death," Karom Ponthaklang, a lawyer for the journalist's family, told reporters.
 
"It is clear from the evidence that the bullet used was the kind used by Thai troops," he said. "We are satisfied with the verdict."
 
He added that he would ask the Department of Special Investigations, part of the Justice Ministry, to press charges against Abhisit Vejjajiva and Suthep Thaugsuban.
 
Abhisit is now leader of the opposition and the government is led by Thaksin's sister, Yingluck Shinawatra, who won an election in July 2011.
 
Elisabetta Polenghi, one of Fabio's sisters, told reporters that those ultimately found responsible for his death should be "at least the person leading the operation on the ground."
 
The ruling could spell further trouble for Abhisit and Suthep, who were charged last year with giving orders to use live ammunition that led to civilian deaths and have a number of similar cases pending against them.
 
If found guilty, they could face the death penalty or life in prison. Abhisit has defended his order to use live ammunition, saying the protesters' refusal to negotiate had left his government with few options.
 
Suthep headed the Centre for the Resolution of the Emergency Situation, a crisis control center that authorized "live fire" zones during the protest and used emergency powers to shut down radio stations, a television station and Web sites.
 
More than 90 people, including two journalists and members of the security forces, died during the two months of unrest in the Thai capital. Reuters cameraman Hiroyuki Muramoto, 43, was killed by a high velocity bullet to his chest during clashes between government troops and protesters on April 10.
 
A Truth for Reconciliation Commission set up by Abhisit's government to investigate the clashes released a report last year that laid blame for the deaths on the military and on a shadowy group of gunmen dressed in black who mingled with the protesters and fired at troops. They were presumed to be on the side of the protesters.
 
The Thai military has a long history of intervention in politics and ousted Thaksin in a 2006 coup. The populist billionaire, who retains strong support and political influence, has been living in self-imposed exile since being sentenced to a prison term for graft.

You May Like

Video Experts Warn World Losing Ebola Fight

Doctors Without Borders says world is losing battle against Ebola, unless wealthy nations dispatch specialized biological disaster response teams More

Video Experts: Rise of Islamic State Significant Development in Jihadism

Many analysts contend the group - which grew out of al-Qaida in Iraq - has been rebuilding for years More

US-Based Hong Kongers Pledge Support for Pro-Democracy Activists

Democracy advocates call on Chinese living abroad to join them in opposing new election rules for their home territory More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Larger Than Life Chinese Lanterns Make Southern California Appearancei
X
Elizabeth Lee
September 02, 2014 8:57 PM
Chinese lanterns with a long history are lighting up in 21st century style at the Los Angeles County Fair in southern California. Visitors can see traditional lanterns that hang, but also lanterns in the shape of animals, iconic landmarks and many other objects, all created by artisans from a place in China known for its lanterns. Elizabeth Lee has the details from the fair in the city of Pomona.
Video

Video Larger Than Life Chinese Lanterns Make Southern California Appearance

Chinese lanterns with a long history are lighting up in 21st century style at the Los Angeles County Fair in southern California. Visitors can see traditional lanterns that hang, but also lanterns in the shape of animals, iconic landmarks and many other objects, all created by artisans from a place in China known for its lanterns. Elizabeth Lee has the details from the fair in the city of Pomona.
Video

Video Experts See Rise of ISIS as Significant Development

The Islamic State’s rise seems sudden. It caught the U.S. by surprise this summer when it captured large portions of northern Iraq and spread its wings in neighboring Syria. But many analysts contend that the group - which grew out of al-Qaida in Iraq - has been rebuilding for years. VOA's Jela de Franceschi takes a closer look at the rise of ISIS and its implications for the Middle East and beyond.
Video

Video Israel Concerned Over Syrian Rebels in Golan

Israeli officials are following with concern the recent fighting between Syrian rebels and government forces near the contested Golan Heights. Forty-four U.N. peacekeepers from Fiji have been seized by Syrian Islamist rebels and the clashes occasionally have spilled into Israel. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video Ukraine Schools Resume Classes, Donate to Government Forces

A new school year has started in Ukraine but thousands of children in the war-torn east are unable to attend because of ongoing clashes with pro-Russia rebels. In Ukraine's capital, patriotic education has become the norm along with donations to support injured security forces fighting to take back rebel-held areas. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video US Detainees Want Negotiators for Freedom in North Korea

The three U.S. detainees held in North Korea were permitted to speak with foreign media Monday. The government of Kim Jong Un restricted the topics of the questions, and the interviews in Pyongyang were limited to five minutes. Each of the men asked Washington to send a representative to Pyongyang to secure his release. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti has our story.
Video

Video Turkmen From Amerli Describe Survival of IS Siege

Over the past few weeks, hundreds of Shi'ite Turkmen have fled the town of Amerli seeking refuge in the northern city of Kirkuk. Despite recent military gains after U.S. airstrikes that were coordinated with Iraqi and Kurdish forces, the situation remains dire for Amerli’s residents. Sebastian Meyer went to Kirkuk for VOA to speak to those who managed to escape.
Video

Video West Africa Ebola Vaccine Trials Possible by Early 2015

A U.S. health agency is speeding up clinical trials of a possible vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus that so far has killed more than 1,500 people in West Africa. If successful, the next step would be a larger trial in countries where the outbreak is occurring. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
Video

Video Survivors Commemorate 70th Anniversary of Nazi Liquidation of Jewish Ghetto

When the German Nazi army occupied the Polish city of Lodz in 1939, it marked the beginning of a long nightmare for the Jewish community that once made up one third of the population. Roughly 200,000 people were forced into the Lodz Ghetto. Less than 7,000 survived. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, some survivors gathered at the Union League Club in Chicago on the 70th anniversary of the liquidation of the Lodz Ghetto to remember those who suffered at the hands of the Nazi regime.

AppleAndroid