Anti-APEC protesters warned not to pop a squat at Bangkok’s City Hall

Anti-APEC protesters are being warned to not pop a squat at Bangkok’s City Hall after the “Citizens Stop Apec 2022” leader said they intended to remain there. Patsaravalee “Mind” Tanakitvibulpon, the group’s leader, says many protesters had travelled from other provinces and had no way of finding accommodation, so they planned on sleeping overnight at City Hall.

According to Bangkok Post, Mind argued that it is a public space and should be at the disposal of citizens. Nipat Thonglek, adviser to Bangkok Governor Chadchart Sittipunt, visited the demonstration site and told reporters that the governor has deemed that all demonstrations in the capital could proceed until 10pm. When asked about the protest group’s plans to stay overnight, he said it would not be allowed.

“We must maintain the principle that we previously agreed in discussions with representatives of the protest group. It was stated that Bangkok officials could not permit demonstrators to spend the night at the site, and we ask that they understand and cooperate by dispersing at 10pm, limiting their [noise] volume and keeping speech topics within the law.”

Thailand is set to host the first in-person APEC Economic Leaders’ Week at the Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre in Bangkok from now until November 19. It is also set to host the 29th APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting on November 18 to 19.

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Previously, the government has called on citizens to help ensure that participants of the meetings have a smooth experience when visiting the capital. However, the event has already been riddled with mishaps such as a sign that was posted with incorrect English spelling. The sign said “Welcom to Apec 2022,” which did not go over well with critics.

Moreover, government officials cracked down on illegal foreigners in the country in a move to “clean up” the country in time for the event.

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Ann Carter

Ann Carter is an award-winning journalist from the United States with over 12 years experience in print and broadcast news. Her work has been featured in America, China and Thailand as she has worked internationally at major news stations as a writer and producer. Carter graduated from the Walter Williams Missouri School of Journalism in the USA.

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