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UK journalist faces Thai jail for carrying protective gear


webfact

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UK journalist faces Thai jail for carrying protective gear

 

BANGKOK: -- A British journalist faces jail time after he was arrested at Thailand's main airport with a gas mask and plates for a bullet-proof vest, which police said today breached a law that classifies the protective gear as war weapons.

 

Anthony Cheng, who works for Chinese state broadcaster CCTV, was detained at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi airport Monday night on his way to report in the war-torn Iraqi city of Mosul where troops are battling the Islamic State group.

 

Gas masks and ballistic vests, which are frequently used by reporters around the world, are classified as war weapons in Thailand and require a licence.

 

Full story: http://www.dnaindia.com/world/report-uk-journalist-faces-thai-jail-for-carrying-protective-gear-2455361

 

-- DNA 2017-05-30

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They should probably let journalists declare such items and possibly have them check them somewhere. Then again the guy should have just want to Mosul and reported with out them. I can't imagine why a journalist would think you need such things just to report in a war zone.

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So what do they expect a journalist to use in somewhere like Mosul. 

 

 

An amulet perhaps. 

 

Common sense is seriously lacking with regard to this "law". 

 

Rachel "worst case scenario" Harvey would have been in serious trouble  if this law had been in force back in the day.... 

Edited by Bluespunk
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They should probably let journalists declare such items and possibly have them check them somewhere. Then again the guy should have just want to Mosul and reported with out them. I can't imagine why a journalist would think you need such things just to report in a war zone.

Is this a sarcastic comment or are you being serious regarding needing personal protective gear such as body armour in a war zone?
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This law seems a little unfair for those who require such equipment to carry out their profession safely. 

I'm not sure how easy it would be for a non-Thai to apply for a license for such items. 

 

A Journalist from Hong Kong faced the same issues a few years ago when reporting in Thailand. 

 

It would make a lot of sense for the Thai Authorities to act sensibly and offer registered journalists some leeway, or even adjust the law for registered journalists to register these items on arrival (and departure) to be used for their own safety. 

 

Its not hard, it easy... but when did common sense ever get in the way of some good old fashioned obstruction and awkwardness.... 

 

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Only in Thailand! While the law seems pretty dumb already, someone(especially a foreigner), heading to a place where his very life may depend on the equipment, should be exempt. I can see it being confiscated if he was arriving, or if he had a warehouse full of them, but this really isn't bright.

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Just now, Andrew65 said:

I'm thinking CCTV/China has sufficient pull to get his guy off with a slap on the wristy, and a fine.

 

Then again TIT, so who knows?!:shock1:

They should confiscate his gear and swap it out with the bullet proof vests made by Thai students and send him to Mosul with that.

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They omit to mention whether this guy was in transit, I guess his luggage wasn't checked through though. Bit stingy on the details and he is obviously on his way elsewhere.

As mentioned , this happened before with another journalist.

Who knows what the real story is !

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Just now, cmsally said:

They omit to mention whether this guy was in transit, I guess his luggage wasn't checked through though. Bit stingy on the details and he is obviously on his way elsewhere.

As mentioned , this happened before with another journalist.

Who knows what the real story is !

Seems he was entering Thailand if he got his bags checked. 

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3 minutes ago, anotheruser said:

Seems he was entering Thailand if he got his bags checked. 

Not necessarily , they x ray them as you check in. It says he was on his way to Mosul so presuming he had an onward flight ?? From reading it , it very much seems as though Bangkok was just a transit point.

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2 minutes ago, cmsally said:

Not necessarily , they x ray them as you check in. It says he was on his way to Mosul so presuming he had an onward flight ?? From reading it , it very much seems as though Bangkok was just a transit point.

 As you said it seems his bags weren't checked through. If he went past immigration and collected them at the baggage to check them in his next flight he was in fact technically in Thailand at that point.

Edited by anotheruser
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Just now, cmsally said:

Not necessarily , they x ray them as you check in. It says he was on his way to Mosul so presuming he had an onward flight ?? From reading it , it very much seems as though Bangkok was just a transit point.

Probably Doha then Suleimaniya or Erbil on QR. I had some trips up there a few years ago.

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Quite important details to leave out as technically there could be someone else with the same stuff whose luggage goes straight through and its OK. This guy got the wrong flight and had to transfer his luggage and he got whacked. !

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Just now, cmsally said:

Quite important details to leave out as technically there could be someone else with the same stuff whose luggage goes straight through and its OK. This guy got the wrong flight and had to transfer his luggage and he got whacked. !

Well the guy should have known it is illegal in Thailand. Not saying the law is right on this but the journalist should have been aware that you can't take these into Thailand. 

 

Seems to me he just thought he could get through without being noticed. He should have known to catch a flight that didn't require him to import these items into Thailand to reach his final destination.

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Fair enough on the law, they can do what they want and ignorance is never bliss, but a little logic can go a long way. Are they really a threat to Thailand? After going through the courts and making themselves looking stupid and inept, again, I'm sure this will all be worked out - fines/deportations etc - all the while people continue to be summarily slaughtered on the street with impunity. Should've been colonised. [emoji6]

 

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2 hours ago, webfact said:

a law that classifies the protective gear as war weapons

a weapon is an instrument used to inflict harm or death.

a gas mask is an instrument used to protect from harm or death.

a Thai law is an instrument used to confuse or entrap the public.

 

Edited by klauskunkel
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" A British journalist faces jail time after he was arrested at Thailand's main airport with a gas mask and plates for a bullet-proof vest, which police said today breached a law that classifies the protective gear as war weapons."

 

Guns are war weapons, but it doesn't stop a good proportion of the population from having one.  Some reports on TV are gun related, but you rarely hear of the BiB charging anybody for possesion.

 

As well as a 2 tier pricing system, we now have a 2 tier gun possesion system.  What's next!

 

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1 hour ago, Andrew65 said:

I'm thinking CCTV/China has sufficient pull to get his guy off with a slap on the wristy, and a fine.

 

Then again TIT, so who knows?!:shock1:

As the journalist is British they may not be too bothered...can always find another journo.

 

Sending him to Mosul indicates a certain expendability...

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Reading the full article all journalists have to do is 

 

"Journalists who feel they need to carry this stuff need to inform or contact the concerned authorities prior to travelling," junta spokesman Major General Werachon Sukhonhapatipak told AFP.

 

So it seems they are aware of the issue and they should have made contact before hand. In that case the journalist really has nothing to cry about. If you don't feel like contacting Thai authorities simply fly through another country than Thailand.

 

 

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