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This exhibition is initiated by the Thai human rights group, 112WATCH, and is co-sponsored by the Sigur Center for Asian Studies. It aims to inform the public about the impact of lèse-majesté law on the lives of individuals. Thailand’s lèse-majesté law, Article 112 of the Thai Criminal Code, which states that defamatory, insulting, or threatening comments about the king, queen, and regent are punishable and is liberally interpreted by the courts, is among the strictest in the world, with penalties ranging from three to fifteen years in prison. There are many civilians have been targeted by the lèse-majesté law, being criminalized, unable to return home, and forced to become a refugee. In the past years, there has been an increase in the number of Thai youths, charged by lèse-majesté law. Some have faced the consequences within Thailand, while some fled the country. Their fate is uncertain.

This mobile exhibition is part of a journey of the exhibition series in Northern America, the main exhibition will take place at Columbia University from September 18th to 25th. The Sigur Center will be hosting part of the exhibition on Thursday, September 14th from 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm in Lindner Family Commons. It will present a reflection on the lèse-majesté law on the life of Thai activists in Thailand, in prison, and in exile. It tells the stories beyond the impact on members of the society, but also on an individual basis. What do they think about the law? How do they feel being in the position of an enemy of the state? What is their view on the lèse-majesté law? And what kind of support do they need from the international community?

As part of the event, Pavin Chachavalpongpun, an Associate Professor at the Center for Southeast Asian Studies at Kyoto University and the founder of 112WATCH will discuss the future of the 112 following the recent Thai election. He will also explore the potential for both Thai and international communities to effect positive policy change concerning Article 112 in Thailand. Please join the Sigur Center and 112WATCH for this special discussion and exhibition!

For more information about 112Watch: https://112watch.org/

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