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A journalist who frequently reported on local corruption in central Thailand was shot dead last week, reports the Thai Journalists Association (TJA).

"Matichon" newspaper reporter Jaruek Rangcharoen was shot in the head at a local market in Don Chedi, Suphanburi province, on 27 September.

In 2007, Jaruek had told Suphanburi Governor Somsak Phurisrisak that someone was plotting against him. The governor inferred that Jaruek might run into conflicts with local civil servants, businessman or local authorities over his hard-hitting reports.

"The killing was aimed at stifling the media and eventually discouraging it from reporting," says TJA.

Rangcharoen was the second "Matichon" reporter killed this year. Athiwat Chaiyanurat, a correspondent in the southern province of Nakorn Srithammarat, was shot dead on 1 August. His case "has shown no signs of progress, and the gunmen in that killing have not been arrested," says TJA.

TJA is appealing to the police to more thoroughly investigate both murders "in order to restore confidence in the security situation."

Visit these links:
- TJA:
- Reporters Without Borders:
- Chaiyanurat case:
(30 September 2008)

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