Garden Restaurant, National Gallery of Victoria
180 St Kilda Road
Melbourne  VIC

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Following the passing of King Rama IX, Thailand is going through a period of significant political and social upheaval. Join us for a panel discussion on how Thailand will fare with its ‘triple threat’ of a royal transition, the entrenchment of military rule, and the potential escalation of separatist violence in its southern provinces. The discussion will feature Nicholas Farrelly, the author of a forthcoming Lowy Institute Analysis of the situation. He will be joined by Professor John Blaxland, Director, ANU Southeast Asia Institute and Head, Strategic and Defence Studies Centre; Dr Tyrell Haberkorn, Fellow at the ANU College of Asia and the Pacific and Mr Sunai Phasuk, Senior Researcher, Human Rights Watch. The discussion will be moderated by Lowy Institute's East Asia Program research fellow, Matthew Busch.

  • Dr Nicholas Farrelly is an academic specialist on Southeast Asian politics who has spent much of his career examining Thailand. He is a Deputy Director in the Coral Bell School of Asia Pacific Affairs, College of the Asia and the Pacific, at the Australian National University, as well as Director of the ANU Myanmar Research Centre. In 2006 Nicholas founded New Mandala, which is a prominent forum for the discussion of Thai political topics.
  • Prof John Blaxland is a Professor in International Security and Intelligence Studies, Director ANU Southeast Asia Institute, and Head at the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre at ANU. He joined the ANU following a distinguished career in the Australian Defence Force, in which he served as the Australian Defence Attaché to Thailand and Myanmar, and graduated from the Royal Thai Army Command and Staff College. 
  • Dr Tyrell Haberkorn is a fellow in the ANU College of Asia and the Pacific, where her work has focused on understanding the recent past and present of state and para-state violence in Southeast Asia.
  • Mr Sunai Phasuk is a senior researcher on Thailand for Human Rights Watch, based in Bangkok. He is a leading expert on the conflict in Thailand’s southern provinces. Before joining Human Rights Watch, he worked as an advisor at the Thai Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs.
  • Mr Matthew Busch is a research fellow in the East Asia Program at the Lowy Institute, where his research focuses on the intersection of politics and economics in Southeast Asia. Mr Busch will moderate the discussion


The Lowy Institute acknowledges the support of the Victorian Government Department of Premier and Cabinet for this event.

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