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Protesters mass at the Ratchaprasong intersection in Bangkok for the first of 2 scheduled rallies

The Thaiger

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Protesters mass at the Ratchaprasong intersection in Bangkok for the first of 2 scheduled rallies | The Thaiger
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Crowds are gathering at the Ratchprsong intersection in Bangkok, one of the promised locations for a rally in response to last night’s refusal of the Thai PM to resign. Thousands have already gathered and, if the weather holds out, the numbers will continue to swell as the evening approaches.

Ratchprasong intersection is one of the busiest intersections in the city, right in the middle of the central Bangkok shopping district.

People have crowded the roads at the intersection, with hundreds of onlookers watching from the skywalk that is strung under the BTS tracks. The crowd is building along Ratchdamri Road, in front of Central World. Banners are being prepared on site with demands for the Thai prime minister’s resignation and other calls for action. Some of the banners are being taken from protest to protest, becoming a canvas for thousands of protesters to share their signatures and messages to the Government.

Messages on one of the banners read “We are the people”, “Everyone is a leader”, “Thailand is for the people”, “Police should protect the people”.

Musical performances are planned for this evening as the peaceful rally slowly grows in number. People’s Party and Free Youth merchandise is also being sold, along with the usual assortment of food stalls along the sides of Ratchadamri Road.

Many of the protesters have also mentioned the prospect of pro-royalist protesters turning up but have expressed their hope that the protests to continue peacefully. At this stage, there has been no sign of yellow shirted demonstrators at the site.

There are very few police patrolling the intersection as of 4.45pm, outnumbered at this stage by opportunist motorcycle taxi riders waiting for the conclusion of the rally. First aid, food, safety gear and merchandise are all on hand, much of the assistance from University volunteers.

There has also been a smattering of foreign protesters joining the Thais, also flashing signs of support, in English.

Tomorrow protesters have promised to march from the Sam Ron intersection to the German Embassy, a symbolic march to draw attention to the chosen overseas domicile of a “very important person”.

Many of the key protest leaders remain in jail, refused bail yesterday by the Appeals Court. They are still in residence at the Bangkok Remand Centre

The State of Emergency, forbidding the gathering of any more than 5 people, was dropped last Thursday morning after being in operation for a week.

Some protesters today say they would have been happy to keep defying the State of Emergency and fear that the removal of the emergency provisions could draw out more Royalist rallies with the potential for violent interaction between the two groups.

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6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    October 25, 2020 at 5:22 pm

    WHADAWEWANT? $%&?%£@!!!!
    WENDUWEWANIT? NOW!!!

    ไม่ใช่พรุ่งนี้

  2. Avatar

    Gosport

    October 25, 2020 at 5:32 pm

    This is one is peaceful, I love that. Here I come with my colorful cart full of meat balls and spicy papaya salad with complement of icy water. Thriving in chaos, prosper in peace. My neighbor has made a fortune since August. I won’t miss the chance.

  3. Avatar

    Jason

    October 25, 2020 at 5:54 pm

    It is easy to see the growing unrest in Thailand and I laud absolutely the peaceful and resolute way in which the students have deported themselves. If there is a figure in history you could model your approach on, it would be Ghandi. Passive, non violent, non cooperation. It gave birth to the modern India. I do hope that you will leave the monarchy in place. Maybe a Constitutional Monarchy as many Commonwealth Countries have. It has served us well in my country and i think it would be pleasing to the spirit of your late King Bhumibol Aduladay. He only sought to serve Thailand as a noble King and see His Kingdom prosper in the world.

    • Avatar

      brian

      October 26, 2020 at 8:05 am

      Not Gandhi he was a racist and a pervert, they do not need to model themselves on anyone

  4. Avatar

    Mark

    October 25, 2020 at 6:36 pm

    Any foreigners who join these are idiots and deserve to be deported. It’s nothing to do with them. None of their business

  5. Avatar

    Al

    October 25, 2020 at 8:45 pm

    They must stay well away from where there will be any of those out there who wish to create a scene.
    Avoid, avoid, avoid. If that happens the presstitutes will be lined up to take photos/videos and plaster them all over the mainscream media.
    They must also watch out for agent provocateurs amongst their own ranks. ANYTHING to black ball them. These are ancient tactics and stay awake/aware of these people.
    Good luck Thai people and don’t get suckered into a trap. 😉

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Bangkok

Khao San Road remains empty during the day, night crowds keep the street alive

Caitlin Ashworth

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Khao San Road remains empty during the day, night crowds keep the street alive | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Daily News

Without foreign tourists at Bangkok’s infamous backpacker mecca, Khao San Road has gone quiet. While nights draw local crowds, it’s not what it used to be and the once bustling street remains empty during the day time.

While locals frequent the nightclubs and bars on the street, Khao San Road is not nearly what is was like before the pandemic. The deserted street during the daytime is an ongoing problem, according to the head of Khao San trader’s association Sanga Reungwattanakun. He says before 5pm, the street is empty.

Before the pandemic, Khao San Road generated a revenue of 1 billion baht each year and 99% of the customers were foreigners, Sanga says. Visiting the street has been considered a “rite-of-passage” for foreign backpackers.

The area is known for being crazy with party hostels, cheap alcohol and balloons filled with laughing gas. It’s also known for its eclectic street food like scorpion on a stick. During the day (pre-pandemic), tourists would get massages, go shopping, get some food or grab a drink. (or 2.. or 3…)

Without the foreign tourists, many of the hotels on the street are closed and Sanga says some traders were just too slow to adjust to the new market conditions.

During the lockdown, Khao San Road had a facelift. More than 48 million baht was put into the area for major renovations like leveling out the road and footpaths, adding some gutters and designing space for emergency vehicles.

Since the road’s official reopening with a Halloween event in October, local officials have been trying to figure out ways to pump more life into the street. The campaign “Go to Khao San 2435” was recently launched to try to draw more people to the area. Nightly opening hours have been extended to 1am, but the daytime still remains a problem.

SOURCE: Thai Visa

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Protests

Thai Constitutional Court official files contempt charge against protest leader

Caitlin Ashworth

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Thai Constitutional Court official files contempt charge against protest leader | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Thai PBS World

A student protest leader is facing charges of contempt after he made statements on Facebook critical of the Constitutional Court ruling to acquit PM Prayut Chan-o-cha, allowing the Thai prime minister and former Army General to continue occupying a military-owned residence. Critics have argued that allowing Prayut, a retired general, to say at the Army residence is a conflict of interest.

Director of the Constitutional Court’s litigation office and police officer, Montri Daengsri, filed the charge against pro-democracy protest leader Parit “Penguin” Chiwarak. Montri says the Facebook posts made by Penguin were defamatory to the court and had tarnished its reputation.

In addition to the Facebook posts, Montri says the protest leader made an offensive speech following the court ruling at the Lat Phrao intersection in Bangkok. He says the speech was defamatory and violated Thailand’s Criminal Code. Police are investigating the claims to determine if charges should be pressed.

Prayut occupies a military reception house at the 1st Infantry Regiment residential area on Phahon Yothin in Bangkok, according to the Royal Thai Army. Tenants in army welfare houses have to pay for utility bills while those who live in the reception houses, like retirees, do not pay for household expenses and the utility bill is covered by the Army.

The Constitutional Court ruled this week that Prayut did not violate the Charter by occupying the residence. The court says under military regulations, former officers can remain at their Army residence after their retirement at the discretion of the Thai Army commander.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Protests

Schoolgirl bursts into tears meeting Panasaya, fearing for activist’s safety

Maya Taylor

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Schoolgirl bursts into tears meeting Panasaya, fearing for activist’s safety | The Thaiger
PHOTO: www.prachachat.net

Protest leader Panusaya Sitthijirawattanakul, aka, “Rung”, has been pictured consoling a young schoolgirl who broke down in tears, concerned about the activist’s safety. Rattapol Kaiipah Promsuwan, who witnessed the exchange, has shared a photo of the moment on social media. She says the girl, who is in Grade 6 (making her around 11 years old), had gone to the organisers’ area during Wednesday’s rally at the Lat Phrao intersection in Bangkok. There, she asked to meet Panusaya, a hero of hers.

The girl’s sister says her sibling has an interest in politics and is concerned about reports that Panusaya faces lèse majesté charges. Thailand’s lèse majesté law prohibits insulting, defaming or threatening the nation’s revered Monarchy, and carries a punishment of up to 15 years’ imprisonment. During her meeting with Panusaya, the girl cried for half an hour, with the student activist trying to console her, and a Facebook photo showing her hugging the child.

Panusaya has received a new summons from the Technology Crime Suppression Division, as a result of a police complaint lodged by royalist supporter, Nitipong Honark, a music composer. She is now being summonsed on December 9, to hear additional charges of lèse majesté and violating the Computer Crimes Act .

Meanwhile, the BBC has named her in its list of the world’s 100 most influential and inspirational women of 2020.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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