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American Activist Arrested in Thailand

American Activist arrested in Thailand. Us embassy ignores cries for help..
I am writing on behalf of Matthew McDaniel, an American human rights activist currently detained at the Suan Phlu Immigration Detention Center in Bangkok. He asked that I contact you to ask you to urge the press to write articles about his arrest and possible deportation. He also would like you to get this information on all of the indymedia sites. As of Monday April 19th, he has had no access to a lawyer or telephone. HIs family is unprotected and he claims that the U.S. Embassy has full knowledge of his deportaiton, but failed to act. However, he has yet to be visited by the Embassy or confirm the validity of the claims. You can visit him and speak with him directly during vising hours at the Suan Phlu Immigration Detention Center. To do so, you must arrive between 10:00-11:00 to receive a form. The doors open for visiting at 11:00, but it is good to be there early. Bring your passport, which you will have to check at the door. You can visit his room (2)
from 11:00-12:00 and speak openly with him. Best Regards. For more information on his arrest, see the information below._______________________________________________________________________EMERGENCY ALERT!______________________________________________American Akha Activist Matthew McDaniel Arrested in Thailand!Matthew McDaniel was arrested on 11:00 AM Thursday, April 15th at the Maisai Immigration Checkpoint while going to deliver vitamins to an Akha friend in Burma. Matthew McDaniel was fighting to save the land of Aooh Yok Akhe that was being taken by the government. In January 2004, Matthew McDaniel officially filed a report with the U.N., citing 47 cases of murder, extrajudicial killings, torture and other abuse by the Thai Army and Police against Hill Tribe People. For three weeks, Matthew McDaniel had heard serious rumors from leaks at the U.S. Embassy in Thailand that he was going to be deported. He complained via email to Embassy Personnel that such leaks were
reckless and illegal and asked for the reports to be confirmed. However, the Embassy gave no reply, negligence that prevented Mr. McDaniel from making arrangements to protect himself and his wife from police abuse, arrest and deportation. Matthew McDaniel’s wife is pregnant and he has four children living in Chiang Rai. Mr. McDaniel is currently held by the Thai Authorities at the Suan Phlu Immigration Detention Center and awaiting deportation. He has been informed of the charges against him or been able to speak with a lawyer about his case. The U.S. Embassy has not sent a representative to discuss the status of his case or the possibility of stopping the deportation proceedings. For now, Mr. McDaniel waits, knowing his wife and children are at risk, and hoping that he can challenge the legality of his arrest and deportation through formal channels.What You Can Do: Write to your Nearest Thai Embassy and demand the immediate and unconditional release of Michael McDaniel! Demand an
official apology from the Thai authorities. Write your MP/Senator and demand a full inquiry into the arrest of Mr. McDaniel. If you are American, demand a full accounting from the U.S. embassy in Thailand for its failure to protect an American Human Rights Activist. Pass this article far and wide. Encourage international and local press to write articles, condemning the actions of the Thai authorities and calling for Mr. McDaniel’s release. Visit www.akha.org for more information. Make a donation to the Akha projects. Deported or not the projects will continue.Read more about Mr. McDaniel and his fight to save the Akha people:For more information see Jim Pollard’s article, “Akha Crusader: US Activist Detained at Suan Phlu.? The Nation. 18 April 2004. Available Online. www.nationmultimedia.com/page.arcview.php3

AKHA CRUSADER: US
activist detained at Suan PhluPublished in The Nation, 18 April 2004.American had filed human rights complaint with UNAn American activist who has campaigned vigorously against government mistreatment of hilltribe people in the far north of Thailand has been detained, and looks set to be deported, by the Immigration Police. Matthew McDaniel, 46, was arrested when he went to extend his visa at the Mae Sai immigration office on Thursday, according to a friend who preferred not to be named. The American was transferred to the Immigration Detention Centre in Bangkok. He told his family and associates on Friday that he had been declared persona non grata and deemed a threat to the country. McDaniel believes the authorities want to expel him from Thailand because he arranged for a US lawyer to file a case about human-rights abuses with the United Nations, his colleague said yesterday.A spokesman from the Immigration Department did not return a phone call late yesterday to confirm that
McDaniel was being deported. The American is from Salem, Oregon. He is married to an Akha woman, who is pregnant, his friend said yesterday. He also has four other children, who live in a remote village in Chiang Rai province. The move to deport McDaniel was not unexpected, his colleague noted, adding that the US Embassy in Bangkok was aware of the case. McDaniel produced "Akha Voices", a 270-page book which details disturbing allegations of abductions and extrajudicial killings by Thai army and police officers that it claims amount to "ethnic cleansing". He has also attacked "the deceptive practices of US-based missionaries and their assumption of control over Akha children and their bold ongoing effort to completely eradicate Akha traditional culture with carefully placed lies". The introduction to the book says McDaniel "is radically opposed to oppressive Thai government policies that destroy the Akha people at their most basic level of existence, their right to grow food, while
at the same time trying to portray to the public and tourists that the government is the benevolent saviour of these 'unfortunate' people". He is also described as a staunch critic of the US 'war on drugs', which he says has resulted in thousands of Akha being imprisoned "at the hands of the DEA [Drug Enforcement Agency]". The book lists Akha people imprisoned in jails in Thailand and controversial circumstances surrounding some of these arrests. It says McDaniel has worked with the Akha in Thailand and Burma since 1991. McDaniel is assumed to have been connected with leaflets distributed in Chiang Mai late last year seeking volunteers to "help SAVE an Akha village from loosing all its land". Villagers in Hoo Yoh "had been told by government officials they could no longer farm land they had been farming for nearly 40 years. The villagers had been given no say in the process," the leaflets said. The dispute affected more than 1,000 people, or 250 families, it said. The campaign
encouraged people to come to Chiang Rai to join a protest camp and to read the website www.akha.org. Jim Pollard THE NATION
 
 


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