Phuket protesters to bolster ranks of anti-government rally in Bangkok
PHUKET: A group of Phuket anti-government protesters called the “Phuket Mass Power Group” will join the Pitak Siam anti-government rally at the Royal Plaza in Bangkok on Saturday.
“We are not happy with the government’s work,” Apharat Chartchutikumjorn, Pitak Siam coordinator for Phuket, told the Phuket Gazette.
“Pitak Siam leader Gen Boonlert Kaewprasit will lead thousands of us in a rally at the Royal Plaza this Saturday [November 24] and members of the Phuket Mass Power Group will travel to Bangkok to join them,” said Ms Apharat.
About 400 to 500 protesters from Phuket will travel to Bangkok to join the rally, she said.
“Some members will travel to Bangkok by bus and the rest will travel by van,” she added.
Ms Apharat estimated that more than 100,000 people from across the country will join the protest.
“Gen Boonlert said that the protest will likely last only one day, maybe two days, but not longer,” she explained.
Government security forces have already been preparing for the mass protest.
Deputy Prime Minister Chalerm Yoobamrung has reportedly ordered the deployment of 50,000 police officers to maintain public order during the rally, and ordered National Police chief General Adul Saengsingkaew to take charge of the situation personally.
Phuket Gazette partner publication The Nation also reported that Gen Adul has asked the government to invoke the Internal Security Act, “not only to give the officers a mandate to manage the situation more aggressively, such as by announcing area or weapons restrictions, but also to allow him to request military support in the event of serious incidents or emergencies”.
— Kritsada Mueanhawong
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