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FILE PHOTO: Thai LGBT community participates in Gay Freedom Day Parade in Bangkok, Thailand November 29, 2018.

REUTERS/Soe Zeya Tun/File Photo

Thailand Moves One Step Closer to Marriage Equality

Thailand’s House of Representatives approved a bill aiming to secure legal recognition of same-sex marriages, a historic first in Southeast Asia. It passed with overwhelming support: 400 votes in favor and 10 against. The bill will ensure all couples equal rights under the law in key areas like marital tax savings, property inheritance, medical rights, and child adoption.

Thailand is known for being one of the few safe havens for the LGBTQ+ community on a continent with historically restrictive laws. Thai law lagged public opinion, with polls showing as many as 96.6% of respondents supporting same-sex marriage legalization. The country is known internationally for its thriving, public social scene, as well as by many media watchers for their hugely popular queer “Boy Love (BL)” dramas and RuPaul’s Drag Race spinoff.

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Former Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra.


Thaksin to Thai king: Pardon me?

Thailand’s billionaire former PM Thaksin Shinawatra has appealed to the country’s king for a pardon just days after being jailed upon his highly anticipated return to the country.

The background: In the early 2000s, Thaksin struck a populist chord to win a slew of elections, and was PM until he was ousted in a 2006 military coup that drove him into exile. Last week, he returned home for the first time since then, only to be jailed on charges of corruption and abuse of power.

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Move Forward Party's leader and prime ministerial candidate Pita Limjaroenrat


Political upheaval expected after Thai PM vote

On Tuesday, Thai lawmakers are expected to hold a high-stakes parliamentary vote for a new prime minister, the outcome of which could cause prolonged political unrest if the Move Forward Party continues being sidelined from forming the next government, even though it won the election.

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Move Forward Party leader and Thai PM candidate Pita Limjaroenrat during the press conference of coalition parties in Bangkok.

Vachira Vachira via Reuters Connect

Election body probes Thai PM hopeful

On Monday, Thailand's electoral commission announced it is investigating whether PM frontrunner Pita Limjaroenrat was qualified to run in last month's general election.

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A man is seen with face paint reading "cancel lèse-majesté law" during a protest in Bangkok, Thailand.

Phobthum Yingpaiboonsuk / SOPA I via Reuters Connect

Thai opposition on 112: Political pragmatism or cop-out?

On Monday, an alliance of Thai opposition forces led by the progressive Move Forward Party signed a pact outlining their goals as a future coalition government. These include rewriting the constitution to clip the military's political power, breaking up business monopolies, and legalizing same-sex marriage.

But there was one glaring omission: reforming Thailand’s draconian lèse-majesté laws, which can put you behind bars for up to 15 years if you diss the monarchy.

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Move Forward Party leader and PM candidate Pita Limjaroenrat celebrate the party's election results in Bangkok, Thailand.

REUTERS/Jorge Silva

A guide to Thailand’s messy post-election politics

On Sunday, Thai voters shocked the ruling pro-military establishment by delivering a landslide victory for the democratic opposition. Okay, so that means the generals are out, right?


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Thailand's dystopian election

Thailand votes for change

Opposition parties won Thailand's general election, according to a provisional tally released Monday. It was a particularly good day for the progressive Move Forward Party, which promised to curb the power of the army and decentralize the country’s Byzantine bureaucracy. MFP now looks set to win at least 151 seats in the 500-seat lower house.

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