Thailand: peasant leader escapes murder attemptEvent
- Initial Date
- Oct 20, 2020
- Event Description
Prominent land rights defenders from the Southern Peasant Federation of Thailand (SPFT), Surat Thani Province, have faced another attempted murder and series of threats to life from intense land disputes that pitched communal peasant communities against the multinational companies and State agencies.
The latest threat occurred in the early morning of 20 October 2020, at about 01.00 am. Members of the SPFT reported the incident that in Santi Pattana Community a man believed to be employed by the company, Mr. Sompon Chimruang, pointed a firearm at the head of Mr. Dam Onmuang member of Santi Pattana community and attempted to kill him. Mr. Dam however avoided the shot causing the bullet to miss. The gunman Sompon Chimruang escaped by driving away.
7:30 am on 20 October 2020, Mr. Dam Onmuang and members of the Santi Pattana Community travelled to Bang Sawan Police Station in Bang Sawan Sub District, Phra Sang District, Surat Thani Province, to file a complaint on the attempted murder.
The police have gone to the scene while Mr. Sompon traveled to surrender himself at Bang Sawan Police Station.The police are trying to mediate the case between both parties.
The Southern Peasants Federation of Thailand (SPFT) was officially formed in 2008. The SPFT is an umbrella organisation comprised of 5 communities that inhabit and cultivate public land while advocating for land reform and self-determination over natural resources. The SPFT has repeatedly faced serious human rights violations: members have been murdered, attacked, threatened and criminalized.
Over the past ten years, Women / Human Rights Defenders of the SPFT have encountered different types of violence, including assassination, forcible eviction, arbitrary arrest and detention, destruction of properties and crops, intimidation, and judicial harassment. All communities reported that they have been threatened by unidentified armed groups which the community members believe are connected to some extent to palm oil companies, local influential groups and other business sectors. Apart from intimidation such as random gunfire into communities at night, destruction of houses and crops, and trespass by local influential groups with soldiers, four members of Klong Sai Pattana Community have already been assassinated, two of whom were women.
- Impact of Event
- Gender of HRD
- Intimidation and Threats
- Violence (physical)
- Rights Concerned
- Right to healthy and safe environment
- Land rights defender
- Corporation (others)
- Event Location
- Summary for Publications
On 20 October 2020, Dam Onmuang, peasant leader and land rights defender, escaped a murder attempt by Sompon Chimruang, allegedly hired by a compamy operating closeby the village in Surat Thani Province, Thailand