Girl, 14, summoned by police over accusation she ‘defamed the Royal Family’

A 14-year-old girl has summoned by police for questioning after allegedly “defaming the Royal Family,” a Human Rights organisation has said.

The shocking incident has taken place in Thailand where the girl had taken part in a protest against the country's Royal Family.

She has become the youngest person to face the charge of royal defamation, Thai news outlets The Thaiger and Thai Rath reports.

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Thai Lawyers for Human Rights has said that the unnamed girl stands accused of violated Section 112 of the country's criminal code for attending a protest in Bangkok in October, 2022.

She is being questioned at the Samran Rat Police Station in the city – becoming the 22nd activist under the age of 18 to face the charges.

Three other 14-year-old children have been given the charge, but the latest child is thought to be the youngest of those.

According to local reports, the law states: “Whoever, defames, insults or threatens the King, the Queen, the Heir-apparent or the Regent, shall be punished with imprisonment of three to 15 years.”

If found guilty, she could face 15 years or more in prison for each charge, with one woman given a 43-year term for insulting the Royal Family in 2021.

Last week two Thai pro-democracy activists were rushed to hospital after taking part in a hunger strike over their arrests for falling foul of the same law.

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According to reports in The Diplomat, Tantawan “Tawan” Tuatulanon and Orawan Phuphong had been on hunger strike at Bangkok’s Central Women’s Correctional Institution for around six days after their bail was revoked voluntarily.

The pair were charged with conducting public opinion polls about royal motorcades, and were released on bail – but returned to court on January 16 after voluntarily revoking their bail and pouring red paint on themselves outside the court house.

And Thai Lawyers for Human Rights claims that 22 people are current in prison awaiting trial for the same reasons.

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