Suthipong film SEPARATE from community participation

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Film Synopsis

On the occasion of the Mobile Forum on Culture and Rights that was held in Phuket on 23 May 2012, members of the Culture and Rights Project interviewed Mr. Suthipong Laithip, an activist working at the Andaman Law and Community Rights Center and providing legal assistance to the Chao Lay people and local fishermen living in the Andaman area and entangled in conflicts revolving around issues of land rights.

While the Chao Lay people have been living in the six provinces located along the Andaman sea for several generation, they are now accused of land encroachment and illegal deforestation and being sued in court by investors and government agencies intending to take control over the areas where they have settled in order to favor tourism policies in the region. By highlighting the difficulties met by the Chao Lay people with the legal procedures launched against them, Mr. Suthipong Laithip also questions the pertinence of certain justice procedures and the approach to the concept of cultural rights within the Thai judicial system.

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