Luke Duggleby

Photographer
     
For Those Who Died Trying
Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Nationality: British
Biography: Luke Duggleby is an award-winning British freelance photographer who has been based in Bangkok, Thailand, for more than 15 years. He works predominantly in Asia but also in Africa and further afield shooting documentary, portraiture and editorial... read on

Our planet is at a critical point in time. We understand more than we ever have about it, yet it is increasingly under threat. Today, a growing number of people find themselves defending their homeland, their villages, from corporations or state-run enterprises that seek to destroy it for their own profit, regardless of those affected. Around the world people have lost their lives for protecting a wide range of environmental values and human rights ranging from the exposing of waste-dumping, illegal deforestation, land grabs, to opposing the construction of polluting power plant.


In Thailand, backlash towards those trying to change an unjust system has been well documented dating back over a century. But the first substantial documentation of the use of violence towards rural community leaders comes between 1973 and 1976 when almost 50 leaders of the Farmers’ Federation of Thailand were killed or injured according to Nitirat’s Sapsomboon’s book The Path of Thai Farmers (1999).


More recently, research by NGO Protection International has documented 62 cases of extrajudicial killings and forced disappearances of Human Rights Defenders (HRD’s) in the last 30 years. This make’s Thailand one of the worst offenders in terms of violence against HRD’s including a system of impunity putting community-based HRDs at high risk of violence and injustice. Across the country, people who have become obstacles have simply been removed. Many perpetrators go unpunished as the influence of the powerful can easily override justice. The effect of such an assassination on a small community struggle can be devastating.


This project is a tribute to those Thai Human Rights Defenders who have lost their lives over the last 50 years. Tracing back to the first cases in the early 1970’s the photographer visited the families or friends of the victims, interviewed them and requested a portrait of the deceased. This portrait of the murdered HRD was then taken to and placed at the exact location, or as close as possible, to where she or he was murdered or abducted, representing the last time they were ever seen alive.


As Doctoral student Karin H. Zackari of Lund University wrote ‘The places are of seemingly no historical significance, yet the photographs refer to a historical continuity, that of the persisting state violence and impunity. By placing the victims in a photographic frame of space and time, they and their destinies are symbolically placed in a history that is geographically and juridically bounded by the Thai nation-state.’


It is vital, for the victims and their families, that their fight and their death should not be forgotten and left un-recognised. Ultimately, those that abuse their power with impunity must not go unpunished; the HRDs recognition and administration of justice are steps on the path to end these killings.

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By Luke Duggleby —

VISUAL STORY

WOMEN HRD'S IN THAILAND

By Luke Duggleby / Thailand — It has been over 20 years since the United Nations unanimously adopted the Declaration on the Right..
VISUAL STORY

TEARSHEETS

By Luke Duggleby
VISUAL STORY

A Precious Land

By Luke Duggleby / Loei — In the Northeastern Province of Loei is the community environmental group of Khon Rak Ban Kerd (Villagers..
VISUAL STORY

PORTRAITS

By Luke Duggleby — A SELECTION OF PORTRAIT IMAGES
VISUAL STORY

SOUTHEAST ASIA'S DENGUE EPIDEMIC

By Luke Duggleby / Bangkok — Dengue fever is considered the most serious mosquito-borne viral disease, with 50% of the world population..
VISUAL STORY

SINGLES

By Luke Duggleby
VISUAL STORY

NGO/DEVELOPMENT

By Luke Duggleby — A selection of work shot for NGO's, Corporate Social Responsibility projects and Developmental work for..
VISUAL STORY

The Wamon Anti-Mining Walk

By Luke Duggleby / sakhon Nakhon, Thailand — Under the vast swathes of green rice paddy, deep below the ground of Northeast Thailand lie enormous..
VISUAL STORY

Protectors of the Forest

By Luke Duggleby — The Dong Phayayen-Khao Yai forest complex, which comprises of four National Parks and a Wildlife Sanctuary..
VISUAL STORY

Cambodia's Cardamom Forest

By Luke Duggleby / Cambodia — The Cardamom Mountains remains one of Southeast Asia's last great forests. One of the largest and most..
VISUAL STORY

Sri Lanka's African Diaspora

By Luke Duggleby / Sri Lanka — On September 24 th 2017, the last remaining Afro-Sri Lankan’s commemorated what they believe to be..
VISUAL STORY

A Village Under Siege

By Luke Duggleby / Surat Thani — On 19th November 2012, two Thai women were found dead at the edge of a palm oil plantation, a mere 800..
VISUAL STORY

Sewing a Message

By Luke Duggleby — A community struggle against an outside entity is all consuming for those involved. They are the people of..
VISUAL STORY

Dagestan

By Luke Duggleby / Dagestan — DAGESTAN Located in the North Caucasus, bordering the Caspian Sea, Azerbaijan and Chechnya, Dagestan is..
VISUAL STORY

South Asia's African Diaspora

By Luke Duggleby / South Asia — Much study and documentation has been done into the Western movement of slaves from Africa, that forcibly..
VISUAL STORY

A Damaged Delta

By Luke Duggleby — Vietnam’s Mekong Delta is one of the world's areas most ‘at-risk’ from the effects of..
VISUAL STORY

Thailand's Illegal Dog Meat Trade

By Luke Duggleby / Nakhon Sakhon Thailand — With thousands of miles of porous borders, Thailand is continuously fighting illicit international trades...
VISUAL STORY

Pakistan's Salt Mines

By Luke Duggleby — The 300km long Kohistan-e-Namak mountain range in Northern Pakistan is home to one of the largest deposits..
VISUAL STORY

Emptying the Seas

By Luke Duggleby — Marine ecologists and conservationists believe that the biggest single threat to marine ecosystems today is..
VISUAL STORY

FROM NO MANS LAND TO THE UNKNOWN

By Luke Duggleby / Debiganj — On July 31 st 2015 the enclaves that formed one of the world's most complicated borders were officially..
VISUAL STORY

Salt

By Luke Duggleby — Taken for granted in modern times salt remains one of the most important minerals for human survival. Our..
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