Thailand asks Myanmar to contain protests

28 December 2015
Thailand asks Myanmar to contain protests
Crowds of protesters stood outside the Thai embassy in Yangon on 25 December to protest the death sentence of two Myanmar migrant workers over the murders of two British tourists on the Thai island of Koh Samui in September 2014. Photo: Thet Ko/Mizzima

The Foreign Ministry has asked the Myanmar government to contain protests against the death sentence in the Koh Tao murder trial as demonstrators again gathered at a border crossing into Kanchanaburi province on Monday.
The ministry sent the request through the Myanmar ambassador to Thailand and the Myanmar foreign ministry, asking Myanmar to contain protests which were spreading beyond Yangon, Foreign Minister Don Pramudwinai said on Monday morning.
Asked to comment on the request by Myanmar's army chief Min Aung Hlaing that Thailand review the death sentence passed on two Myanmar citizens, Mr Don said it would have no effect. No country would halt the justice process midway through.
The case could still go to the appellate court, the foreign minister said.
Mr Don also said that with large numbers of people now demonstrating, it was impossible to identify the intentions of all of them. However, some demonstrations appeared to be unusually organised.
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha also said on Monday an appeal was possible.
Thailand had its laws and Myanmar had asked that the case to be handled strictly in accordance with the justice system, he said.
Hundreds of Myanmar people resumed their demonstration against the death sentence passed on Thursday last week on two countrymen, Zaw Lin and Win Zaw Htun, found guilty of murdering two British tourists, Hannah Witheridge and David Miller, on Koh Tao island in Surat Thani province in September 2014.
The demonstration started at the Three Pagodas Pass border crossing in Kanchanaburi province about 7am Monday. It was the second such protest there. The first was on Saturday.