Court rejects request to delete Thanathorn’s livestream about vaccine program

Progressive Movement leader Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit’s controversial Facebook livestream, criticizing the Thai government over its handling of COVID-19 vaccine procurement with reference to the monarchy, can now be put back online.

The Criminal Court, on Monday, rejected a request from the Ministry of Digital Economy and Society to remove the footage from Facebook, on the grounds that most of the content was criticism of the government’s handling of the vaccine program, with little reference to the shareholders of Siam Bioscience, a Thai pharmaceutical company owned by the Crown Property Bureau, which was awarded the contract to procure COVID-19 vaccine from AstraZeneca and to produce it in Thailand, with technology transferred from AstraZeneca.

The court ruled that the reference to the company was not the essence of the livestream footage presented by Thanathorn, nor could it be construed as a threat to national security.

The court had previously issued an injunction removing Thanathorn’s livestream from social media in Thailand, but Thanathorn appealed.

Royalists have accused Thanathorn of dragging the monarchy into the political conflict over the government’s vaccine program.

 

Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service (Thai PBS)