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Police face criticism over plans to buy millions of baht worth of tear gas and riot gear

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Protest in Bangkok on February 28 / Photo by Thai News Pix

Apparently, the Royal Thai Police looking to spend tens of millions of baht on riot gear and tears, a move that’s sparked criticism as many have opposed the police’s tactics to crack down on pro-democracy protesters. During many of youth-led protests this year, where activists call for government and monarchy reform, riot police have deployed high pressure water cannons, tear gas, and rubber bullets to break up crowds.

Khaosod English reports that the police announced their purchases on their website. The purchases include 195,000 baht for chemical foams used in police cannon trucks from ABC Protection Supply, 23,166,000 baht for tear gas from K Tree Corporation, and over 12 million baht for Long Range Acoustic Device, or LRADs, from Engineering Reward (Thailand).

Today, an opposition lawmaker, Nittcha Boonlue from the Thai Sang Thai Party, today questioned the Royal Thai Police’s proposal to spend 30 million baht on additional anti-riot equipment, according to Khaosod.

“Is it right for law enforcement to pour money into buying these weapons in order to control or crush those who think differently in order to serve those in power?”

According to Nittcha, the funds may have been better used to battle the spread of the coronavirus, drug proliferation, and crime. She was also concerned that the new riot gear would be used to suppress dissidents.

SOURCE: Khaosod English

 

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