Thai has the highest percentage of second-language speakers among major languages

If Ethnologue says 67% of Thai speakers speak it as a second language, what language are those people speaking as their first language? And what does this mean for Thailand’s divided politics? GUEST EDITORIAL by Karl Victor The organization Ethnologue has a peculiar statistic in its 2015 report on Thailand. The Thai language comes in […]

Kalasin villagers stopped from protesting petroleum drilling

KALASIN – On August 9 at 9:00 A.M., Thailand’s Minister of Energy, Narongchai Akrasanee, visited the Dong Mun petroleum-drilling site (DM-5) in Krung Kao sub-district, Tha Khun Tho district, in Kalasin province. Around 100 villagers from three community organizations waited on the road to the drilling site, hoping to deliver a letter asking for the […]

Northeasterners mark 50th anniversary of the communist armed struggle

By Fabian Drahmoune NAKHON PHANOM – Fifty years ago, Comrade Tang fought for communism in the first violent clash between communist fighters and Thai security forces. Last week, at 88 years old, he marked the anniversary with a call for democracy. In the early morning on August 7, villagers and local politicians flocked through the […]

Six hundred protesters demand to keep Khon Kaen’s central bus terminal

KHON KAEN- Yesterday 600 protesters, organized by the group, “Rak Pattana Baw Kaw Saw 1,” gathered at the Khon Kaen Provincial Hall to voice their concern over the government’s decision to close Khon Kaen’s original bus terminal and consolidate all bus transportation in the city’s new bus terminal, 7km from the city center. Khon Kaen […]

Voices from Isaan: a national unity government?

KHON KAEN – The economy is a main concern for Northeasterners as they respond to the proposal of installing a national unity government composed of politicians from the main political parties. Last month, members of the National Reform Council (NRC) and conservative social critic Prawase Wasi floated the idea of a national unity government with […]

Q&A with student activist group ‘Dao Din’

KHON KAEN – The Law and Human Rights for Society Group, better known as “Dao Din,” is a student activist group that recently has been widely praised and criticized for involvement in anti-junta student protests. Critics have raised questions about the reasons behind the group’s symbolic activities against the coup, the group’s alleged backers,  and […]

Freshly-released anti-coup student activists tell stories from jail

Freed anti-junta activists from the Dao Din group talk to Prachatai about their experience in jail and how they learned about the value of freedom. GUEST CONTRIBUTION by Panida Dumri and Nattamon Krajangdararat First published on Prachatai English On Wednesday 8 July, the 14 anti-junta activists from the New Democracy Movement (NDM) were released after […]

US activists support detained thai students and protest military rule in Thailand

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – On Monday morning, employees of the Royal Thai Consulate-General of Los Angeles and nearby pedestrians were greeted by protesters standing in support of the 14 students who were arrested in Bangkok on June 26. The event was organized by the Educational Network for Global and Grassroots Exchange (ENGAGE), a non-profit network […]

Apichatpong’s ‘Cemetery of Splendour’ Draws standing ovation at Cannes

At the world premiere of Cemetery of Splendour at Cannes Film Festival last week, Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s newest work was well received. But despite receiving a standing ovation and being celebrated among film critics, the director came home empty-handed in the prize ceremony. Set in his hometown Khon Kaen, Cemetery of Splendour (Thai: Rak Thi Khon […]

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