Peaceful protesters gathered in Bangkok earlier today for pro-democracy demonstrations and a Buddhist Lent ceremony as well. The protests were organised by the pro-democracy group Taloo-Fah and their leader Jatupat “Pai Dao Din” Boonpattararaksa hosted the peaceful event.
The Taloo-Fah organised smaller groups around Bangkok in areas like Ratchaprasong intersection and Pathumwan, where they held a candle-making ceremony, a tradition for Buddhist Lent. The activity was in recognition of the Buddhist holiday that had been running for the past 5 days since July 20.
Protesters gathered these candles and at around 3 pm the groups converged at the Victory Monument. The candles would then be used as a symbol of the core demands of the protests. The merged groups then marched to the Government House to continue their protest.
The police were prepared for their arrival at around 4:25 pm. Shipping containers, traffic barricades, and barbed-wire fences were set up to hold back the marching demonstrators, with crowd control police readied for confrontation. They also had water cannon trucks ready to spray the crowds with high-pressure water, a technique that has been widely criticised in previous protest responses.
Fortunately, the demonstrators and the police in place to defend against them remained peaceful throughout the protests, unlike a similar event this afternoon in Phuket where police deployed water cannons, tear gas, and rubber bullets to disperse the crowd. Leader Pai Dao Din ended the protest just after 5:30 pm without incident.
The demonstrators held a peaceful protest with ceremonies and symbolic performances, though their message was clear and their symbolic gestures were powerful. The group demanded the resignation of PM Prayut Chan-o-cha and the government supporting him, asserting the government has failed to manage or control the spreading Covid-19 pandemic in Thailand. The group illustrated the position vividly with fake corpses representing those who died of Covid-19 in Thailand and burning a portrait of the PM Prayut.
SOURCE: The Pattaya News
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