Protesters target Thai government

Issue 

BY KERRIE BARRON & JAMES CAULFIELD

CANBERRA — A group of activists gathered outside the Royal Thailand Embassy in Yarralumla on June 12 in response to the Thai government's "war on drugs".

The "war" began around three months ago, and has already cost more than 2000 lives, with another 25,000 people arrested.

The protest was organised by Canberra Alliance for Harm Minimisation and Advocacy (CAHMA) as part of an international day of protest. Speakers included a CAHMA representative, Greens MLA Kerry Tucker and Democrats MLA Roslyn Dundas.

A letter from the Thai Drug Users' Network (TDN) calling for an end to the killings was also read out. "Nearly 50% of all Thai drug injectors are HIV-positive, and are excluded by policy from antiretroviral access. If the government policy hasn't killed us all, AIDS will", the TDN said.

The protest concluded with the laying of flowers on the embassy's lawn, symbolising the lives already lost.

From Green Left Weekly, June 18, 2003.

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