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Volume 453: debated on Tuesday 28 November 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent assessment she has made of freedom of speech in Thailand; and what discussions she has had with (a) the UK Embassy in Bangkok and (b) the British Ambassador to the United Nations on the matter. (102328)

Our embassy in Bangkok continues to monitor the situation in Thailand and report on restrictions on the freedom of expression. We would like to see the lifting of martial law as soon as possible and the early re-establishment of full democracy. We have been working with our EU colleagues and others to urge the new administration to move rapidly in that direction.

Some restrictions were placed on the media both during and after the coup. A number of websites and local radio stations have been closed down.

There have been no discussions with the UK's Permanent Representative to the United Nations on this issue.