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Parliament removes support banner from FFP’s offices

Jack Burton

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Parliament removes support banner from FFP’s offices | The Thaiger
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Parliamentary officials have taken down a large signed banner supporting the Future Forward party’s leader leader Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit from the door to the party parliamentary offices, saying it was “inappropriate.”

Last week Thanathorn was stripped of his MP status by the Constitutional Court. He was stripped of status for owning shares in a media company when he registered as a candidate, in violation of the 2017 Constitution, charges he denied.

The parliamentary secretary says the banner was removed to “maintain order in parliament, which is a government office”.

Chuan Leekpai, the parliamentary president, was consulted before banner was removed.

Issara Seriwatthanawut, a Democrat Party list-MP, says that officials respect all MPs and all parties because they were elected by the public.

“But the parliament is an honourable venue and government office, and people should not just write and put up anything they want.”

The banner was signed by FFP leader Thanathorn, and included messages of support from FFP MPs. It was posted on the door in front of the party offices on the third floor of the new parliament building.

Before the ruling on November 20, Thanathorn wrote a message on the sticker: “Future Forward is people and their journey.”

He then raised his hand in a three finger salute, an anti-junta sign adopted by activists, to the cheers of FFP MPs, before heading to the Constitutional Court to receive its judgment. The three finger salute became famous in the Hunger Games movie franchise, as a symbol of rebellion against the oppressive regime in the films.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

Parliament removes support banner from FFP's offices | News by The Thaiger

Parliament removes support banner from FFP's offices | News by The Thaiger

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Jack Burton is an American writer, broadcaster, linguist and journalist who has lived in Asia since 1987. A native of the state of Georgia, he attended the The University of Georgia's Henry Grady School of Journalism, which hands out journalism's prestigious Peabody Awards. His works have appeared in The China Post, The South China Morning Post, The International Herald Tribune and many magazines throughout Asia and the world. He is fluent in Mandarin and has appeared on television and radio for decades in Taiwan, Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.

Protests

Thai PM insists martial law will not be used against protesters

Maya Taylor

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Thai PM insists martial law will not be used against protesters | The Thaiger
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Thai PM Prayut Chan-o-cha says he has no intention of resorting to martial law to put an end to the current political unrest, adding that existing laws provide enough scope for dealing with those who take matters into their own hand. The Bangkok Post reports that he was responding to reporters following a US-ASEAN Business Council meeting at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

“In a democratic world, I cannot get everyone to agree with me. All I can do is to find a way to move forward together to avoid problems in the future.”

The then General Prayut, head of the Thai army, made similar assurances in the latter stages of the Yingluck Shinawatra government before he led the NCPO in a bloodless military coup in May 2014.

Meanwhile, the Ratsadon (People’s Party) group says it’s planning to hold protests over the course of 5 days, without camping overnight. The group has confirmed its intentions in a Line group shared with the media, adding that locations and times will be confirmed on social media.

Responding to a question about the 5-day plan, the PM appeared to take the announcement in his stride.

“Just let them announce it. The law is there to punish anyone who breaks it.”

The announcement comes after a rally at the headquarters of the Siam Commercial Bank yesterday, which was initially supposed to take place at the Crown Property Bureau. The group changed the location the night before, claiming it did so to avoid royalist groups deliberately sent to provoke them. An explosive device was thrown and gunshots fired injuring 2 protesters. Full report about the incident HERE.

Thousands of pro-democracy activists gathered at the SCB building, which was closed for the day, in the Chatuchak district of the capital. Protest leaders stood on the back of a truck, addressing activists through loudspeakers as they slammed the government. Prominent activist, Parit Chiwarak, aka, “Penguin”, was wearing a yellow duck suit as he held a sign that read, “Citizens Area”.

The use of yellow ducks has become a prominent feature of the anti-government protests. Large rubber ducks were initially deployed to deal with the worst of the water cannons, with protesters using the birds to shield themselves from chemical-laced water and tear gas. But with large yellow ducks also used in Hong Kong’s protests this year, they have become an international symbol of the pro-democracy movement. Tyrannosaurus Rex dinosaur costumes have also been employed to make political statements about the age and culture of MPs in the ruling Palang Pracharat coalition.

Meanwhile, Penguin is condemning the decision to press charges of lèse majesté against pro-democracy activists, calling it an attempt to leave protest groups without leaders. He says he’s confident the move will backfire, as it will encourage more people to come and attend future protests. At least 12 protesters have been summonsed to face charges, with police saying they plan to summons between 3 – 5 others, who will also be charged.

One of the protesters charged under Section 112 is Panusaya “Rung” Sithijirawattanakul, who was nominated by the BBC as one of their 100 most inspirational women in the world 2020. Read that story HERE.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Politics

Poll reveals Thais hope President-elect Biden will be a “good leader”

The Thaiger

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Poll reveals Thais hope President-elect Biden will be a “good leader” | The Thaiger

Thailand’s Suan Dusit Poll has revealed that most Thais hope that the President-elect Joe Biden will be a good leader of his country. The opinion survey, by Suan Dusit Rajabhat University, was conducted online on November 13 through November 18, in which 1,038 people responded with their opinions throughout the country.

A majority of Thais, almost 90%, responded that they were interested in the US Presidential election outcomes and were following the news regularly. About 58% responded as moderately following the elections and almost 32% highly interested in the elections. Only about 10% of respondents said that they were not interested in the elections.

Of those who responded as being interested in the election, their reasons were largely due to the fact that they felt the elections have a large impact on the world economy, with almost 74% of poll’s respondents agreeing with that reasoning. About 61% of respondents said the reasons they were interested was because the US is a world superpower, while about 49% said they were merely interested in who would be the winner.

The elections come at a time when Thailand is grappling with an unstable political situation, as protesters against the government are pushing for constitutional amendments. Almost 61% of respondents pointed to this intersection of politics, citing the democratic election of a country’s leader by the people could be applied to their own country’s politics and society. About 57% of the people said they were highly aware of the issues surrounding the right to vote with around 53% citing the democratic electoral system in America was of interest.

However, only 48% said they felt Thailand’s economy would be better after the US election, with 47% believing it would stay the same. A mere 4.5% said they thought the Thai economy would be worse after the election.

Regardless of their reasoning for being interested in the elections, about 65% of respondents wanted whoever was elected as the next US President to be a good leader both at home and on the international stage. 62% wanted the new leader to forge friendships and good relations with other countries and almost 58% wanted him to refrain from taking advantage of and suppressing other countries.

SOURCE:Bangkok Post

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Politics

Grammy executive files lèse-majesté complaint against Panusaya “Rung” Sithijirawattanakul

The Thaiger

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Grammy executive files lèse-majesté complaint against Panusaya “Rung” Sithijirawattanakul | The Thaiger

A lèse-majesté complaint has been officially filed against Panusaya “Rung” Sithijirawattanakul, one of the leaders of the Ratsadon ‘People’s Movement’. She was the first to read the, now infamous, 10 point manifesto at the Thammasat University in April, and then in a more public forum at a Democracy Monument protest in early August.

Nitipong Hornak, a songwriter and judge on Thailand’s Got Talent. He’s also a founder and major shareholder of GMM Grammy Entertainment, is behind the complaint. It was presented to the police Technology Crime Suppression Division on Friday afternoon.

Ms Panusaya has been present and active in almost all of the main protests, and been arrested twice. She is currently out on bail.

It hasn’t been disclosed which incident Mr Nitipong has cited in his official complaint. But Ms Panusaya was the first person to publicly read out the 10-point manifesto of a Thammasat University group calling for reform of the monarchy at the university in April.

The prime minister threatened protesters with “the full force of the law, including the lèse-majesté law – Section 112 of the Criminal Code. Back in June, the PM announced that HM the King had expressed his desire for the Government not to use the law against the Thai people.

“His Majesty the King does not want to use Thailand’s strict lèse-majesté laws, which make it a crime to insult or criticise the royal family, but Thai PM Prayut Chan-o-cha says people should still be careful what they say about the Thai monarchy.”

The Thai Government has routinely used the newer Computer Crimes Act, and the national security law for charges such as sedition, which carries jail terms up to seven years. Up until August this year any criticism or commentary about the Thai monarchy were extremely unusual, if not taboo in polite Thai society. The current round of protests are unique in their open discussion, and criticism, of the Thai Monarchy. They are demanding that the role of the Thai Monarch be covered under a revised Thai constitution.

 

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