What happened? | Bangkok Post: learning

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What happened?

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How did the conflict shift abruptly from tear gas, rubber bullets and other projectiles to hugs and rose-giving? Some of the answers are starting to emerge. 

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In a scene almost unthinkable a few hours before, a policeman hugs two protesters. CHANAT KATANYU

If you want to catch up on what has happened over the past few days, here is our coverage which includes dozens of photos from our Bangkok Post photographers:

http://www.bangkokpost.com/learning/learning-from-news/382962/crunch-time-day-two

http://www.bangkokpost.com/learning/learning-from-news/382687/crunch-time-day-one

http://www.bangkokpost.com/learning/learning-from-news/382533/final-confrontation

http://www.bangkokpost.com/learning/learning-from-news/382260/protests-no-end-in-sight

http://www.bangkokpost.com/learning/learning-from-news/382098/where-are-we-and-what-next

http://www.bangkokpost.com/learning/learning-from-news/381919/protests-not-over-yet

All of a sudden, protesters realised police were removing the barbed wire and barriers they had reinforced overnight. PATTARACHAI PREECHAPANICH

Police let up defences for HM birthday celebrations

Wassayos Ngamkham 
Aekarach Sattaburuth


The upcoming celebrations for His Majesty the King's birthday are behind the Metropolitan Police Bureau's (MPB) decision to allow anti-government protesters into their headquarters and Government House.

A Pheu Thai Party source on Monday night said the government negotiated with protest leaders to end clashes between demonstrators and riot police, with the military acting as mediator.

The military asked the government to allow protesters inside MPB headquarters and Government House as a symbolic gesture to end the violence, the source added.

As their fellow protesters stream on to the Government House lawn, this group poses for, of course, a group photo. CHANAT KATANYU

The military was keen to avoid clashes during the King's birthday tomorrow.

At the height of Monday's clashes, a tear gas canister landed in the compound of Suan Kularp Palace, near the MPB's head office, Daily News online reported.

Pol Lt Gen Kamronwit said he had been summoned for an audience with a royal family member at the palace. He was told Thais must not fight each other.

Pol Lt Gen Kamronwit stressed the importance of showing loyalty to the royal family.

He added that His Royal Highness Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn will return to Thailand today from an overseas trip.

An MPB source said senior police agreed that enforcing heavy-handed measures to deal with the protesters could worsen the situation with the crackdowns on the red-shirt protesters during the 2010 political unrest serving as a reminder.

"The conflict has resulted from politics, so it must be resolved through political means. We have taken the wrong path.

"Today, the military are heroes. Thailand must restore its image and let politicians fix the political problems," the source said.

After the tear gas cleared and riot police backed off, it was clear why both sides were so determined to control the Chamai Maruchet bridge. That is Government House in the distance. CHANAT KATANYU

The decision to allow protesters into the MPB compound and Government House was a joint one, reached at a meeting between senior police officers. It was not made solely by national police chief Adul Saengsingkaew.

Deputy national police chief Woraphong Chiewpreecha confirmed the clashes between riot police and protesters at Orathai bridge on Monday night led to the MPB's decision to end their resistance to the protesters.

The scene near the Orathai bridge yesterday morning after heavy fighting the night before. SEKSAN ROJJANAMETAKUL

Early yesterday after the clashes, police found firearms at the site, he said. In light of this, the MPB feared that if police had continued to block demonstrators, a "third group" could have exploited the opportunity to instigate violence, which would have resulted in more deaths and injuries, Pol Gen Woraphong said.

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Vocabulary:

audience: a formal meeting that you have with an important person, expecially royalty - การเข้าเฝ้า

avoid: to try to prevent something from happening - หลีกเลี่ยง

barbed wire: thick wire with a lot of sharp points sticking out of it, used for making fences - ลวดหนาม

barrier: a wall, pile of sandbags, etc., that prevents water from entering - สิ่งกีดขวาง

block: to stop someone/ something from moving through or along something else - ปิดกั้น, กีดขวาง

canister: a round metal container that is used to hold gases or chemical substances under pressure - กระป๋องสเปรย์

clash: a fight between groups of people - การปะทะกันสองฝ่าย

compound: an area enclosed by a fence or wall in which people work or live - บริเวณ

conflict: an angry disagreement between people or groups - ความขัดแย้ง

coverage: the reporting of news and sport in newspapers and on the radio and television - การรายงานข่าว

crackdown: strong action that someone in authority takes to stop a particular activity - การใช้กำลังเข้าปราบปรามของเจ้าหน้าที่

deal with: to take action to solve a problem - รับมือกับ, จัดการกับ

defences: the particular structures, weapons, and people that are used for protecting a place - การป้องกัน,การต้านการรุกราน

demonstrators: people who march with other people in public to show that they support or oppose something - ผู้ชุมนุมประท้วง

determined: wanting to do something very much and not letting anyone or any difficulties stop you - ตั้งใจจริง, ซึ่งมุ่งมั่น

enforce : to make sure laws are obeyed - บังคับให้ใช้, บังคับให้ทำ, ใช้กำลังบังคับให้ปฏิบัติตาม

exploit: to use for your own benefit - หาประโยชน์จาก

firearm: a gun of some type - อาวุธปืน

gesture: something that you do or say to show a particular feeling or intention - ท่าที

headquarters: the place where an organisation or company has its main offices - กองบัญชาการ

heavy-handed: using unnecessary force; using too much of something in a way that can cause damage - ซึ่งเข้มงวด, ซึ่งกดขี่, ซึ่งงุ่มง่าม

image: an opinion that people have about someone or something - ภาพลักษณ์

in light of: as a result of -

injury: physical damage done to a person or a part of their body - อาการบาดเจ็บ

instigate: to cause something bad to happen; to make something start or happen, usually something official - ก่อให้เกิด, กระตุ้น

joint: done together; belonging to or shared between two or more people - ที่ร่วมกัน, ความร่วมมือกัน

keen: very interested, eager or wanting (to do) something very much - สนใจ, ใจจดใจจ่อ

lawn: an area of grass that is cut short - สนามหญ้า

loyalty: the quality of being firm and not changing in your friendship with or support for a person or an organization, or in your belief in your principles - ความจงรักภักดี

means: methods; ways - วิธี, วิธีการ

measure: a firm action taken to solve a problem or stop a dangerous unpleasant situation - มาตราการ

mediator: a person who talks to two separate people or groups involved in a disagreement to try to help them to agree or find a solution to their problems - ผู้ไกล่เกลี่ย

metropolitan police: the police in responsible for a city - ตำรวจนครบาล

negotiate: to try to reach an agreement by discussing something in a formal way - เจรจาต่อรอง

opportunity: a chance to do something, or a situation in which it is easy for you to do something - โอกาส

overseas: in another country - ต่างประเทศ

palace: the official home of a king, queen, president, etc, a large impressive house - พระราชวัง, ตำหนัก, ปราสาท

path: a plan of action or a way of achieving something - เส้นทาง, วิถีทาง, แนวทาง

politics: the activity of getting power and serving as part of a country's government - การเมือง

pose: to stay in a particular position in order to be photographed - วางท่าถ่ายรูป

protester: someone who shows that they disagree with something by standing somewhere, shouting, carrying signs, etc - ผู้ต่อต้าน, ผู้ประท้วง

reinforce: to make stronger - เสริมให้แข็งแรงขึ้น

reminder: something that helps you remember something that happened in the past - สิ่งช่วยเตือนความจำ

resistance: a refusal to accept something or allow it to happen - การต่อต้าน, การขัดขืน

resolve: to solve a problem, or to find a satisfactory way of dealing with it - แก้ไขปัญหา

restore: to cause a particular situation to exist again, especially a good one - ฟื้นฟูสภาพ

riot police: police who are trained to deal with violent groups of people - ตำรวจปราบจราจล

senior: with a high rank or position - อาวุโส

site: a place where something happened - ที่เกิดเหตุ

solely: only; not involving somebody/something else - แต่ผู้เดียว

source: someone who gives information - แหล่งข่าว

stream: to move in large numbers in a continuous flow -

stress: to emphasise something such as an idea, fact or detail; to explain why something is important - เน้น

summon: to officially order someone to come to a place - เรียกตัว

symbolic: representing something important, but in this case, not the real thing - เป็นสัญญาณ เป็นสัญลักษณ์

tear gas: a gas used by some police and armed forces to control crowds of people. It hurts the eyes and makes them produce tears - ก๊าซน้ำตา

unrest: angry or violent behaviour by people who are protesting or fighting against something - สถานการณ์ที่ไม่สงบ

upcoming: happening soon; available soon - ซึ่งกำลังจะเกิดขึ้น, ซึ่งกำลังจะมา

violence: physical force with the deliberate intention of causing damage to property or injury or death to people - ความรุนแรง, การใช้กำลังทำลาย

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