10/05/2016, 09.39
HONG KONG - CHINA-THAILAND
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Occupy Central’s Joshua Wong "detained" in Thailand. A favor to China

by Paul Wang

Wong was in Bangkok to attend a commemoration of the massacre of students in 1976, by the military junta of the time. Thailand under the influence of China: It handed over one of the publishers who "disappeared" in China; It expelled two Chinese dissidents; has sent dozens of Uyghur refugees back to China.

 

Bangkok (AsiaNews) - The activist Joshua Wong, 19, one of the most famous faces of the Occupy Central protests in 2014, has been detained by Thai authorities on arriving at Suvarnabhum airport according  to  a statement by Demosisto Party, founded by Wong and other students.

Wong would set to meet university students, at the invitation of a colleague, the student activist Netiwit Chotipatpaisal, who was waiting for him at the airport.

The decision to block Wong was taken by immigration authorities. Under current norms Hong Kong residents can enter Thailand for 30 days. But in the case of Wong, the authorities fear that he might trigger a series of pro-democracy demonstrations, like those of Occupy Central, which lasted nearly three months.

Wong was set to meet the students of Chulalongkorn University to commemorate the 1976 student massacre, by the military junta of the time. According Netiwit, the Thai authorities have "received a letter from the Chinese government" to stop Wong’s activities.  The Demosisto party is in favor of independence in Hong Kong, which absolutely unacceptable by China.

Last May Wong could not enter Malaysia, where he was expected for a conference on democracy in China. Then he was sent back immediately to Hong Kong.

It is likely that this time Wong will return to the territory without being able to meet the students.

Thailand seems increasingly prone to serving the needs of China. Last year, Gui Minhai, a publisher in Hong Kong critical of China, disappeared while on vacation in Thailand. Later he appeared  on Chinese state television, "confessing" that he willingly gave himself up to the authorities in Beijing. Gui is one of five publishers who "disappeared" for a long time and reappeared with televised "confessions" about their alleged crimes.

Last year, two dissidents and their families, who had sought asylum at the UN in Bangkok, were sent back to China. Many Uyghurs (Muslims of Xinjiang), who fled to Thailand, were repatriated.

 

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