4 May 2023
Press associations have urged the public to value press freedom and encourage politicians who will be working in Parliament to protect and promote press and public freedom.
Thai Journalists Association, the Thai Broadcast Journalists Association, and the News Broadcasting Council of Thailand jointly released a statement in honour of World Press Freedom Day 2023 urging the public to value the importance of media freedom.
As World Press Freedom Day falls within the general election campaign period, the press associations have taken this opportunity to call on politicians across the spectrum who will be legislating in Parliament in the near future, asking them to:
1. protect and uphold the right to freedom of expression in its various forms, including freedom of the press, freedom of expression, freedom of political expression, and freedom of peaceful assembly as enshrined in the Thai Constitution.
2. reform the enforcement of laws related to freedom of expression to prevent them from being used to stifle media and public freedoms and to address the issue of SLAPPs (strategic lawsuits against public participation).
3. establish a mechanism to hold accountable those who threaten or inflict violence against those who work in the media industry, and to eliminate the culture of impunity.
4. not revisit the version of the media ethics bill that was previously rejected by Parliament.
5. support an independent self-regulatory mechanism in the media industry to elevate professional standards and ethics, in conjunction with the promotion of media freedom.
The three groups also urge media professionals to carry out their duties with ethics, to protect the interests of the public, to promote freedom, and to oppose any attempts to suppress it. #