Chaos in parliament: Day 3 (updated)

National reconciliation seemed a distant dream today as protestors cut off all access to parliament, halting debate on the proposed unity legislation for at least until next week.

Please join us on our facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/bangkokpostlearning

PAD protestors cut off Pichai Street entrance to parliament this morning. KITJA APICHONROJAREK

Evening update

House Speaker Somsak Kiatsuranont on Friday adjourned deliberation of the reconciliation bills, scheduling the resumed debate for June 6 and 7, House of Representatives secretary-general Pithoon Phumhiran said.

The meeting on June 6 was scheduled to start at 1.30pm and at 10am on June 7, Mr Pithoon said late Friday afternoon.

The postponement, following a meeting of Pheu Thai MPs at the House No 111 Foundation  office,  was intended to prevent the situation from escalating to political violence, said Mr Wisut.

Multi-colour group protesters led by Tul Sitthisomwong on Friday morning closed the Karn Ruan intersection on Ratchawithee road, blocking the route to the parliament’s Prasartthevarit gate, the only gate open for entry and exit.

The other gates were closed by police after the  yellow-shirt People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD)  moved their protest from Royal Plaza to the parliament  complex on Wednesday.

On Friday, the new blockade resulted in Pheu Thai Party MPs not being able to enter the House of Representatives to attend the scheduled session to deliberate the four proposed reconciliation bills, which had been moved to the top of the agenda by government majority on Thursday.

Protesters stop a Phue Thai MP from reaching parliament. APICHART JINAKUL

Reports said that only Democrat and other opposition MPs were allowed access to the parliament.

People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) – the union of several groups protesting against the Samak, Somchai and Abhisit and now Yingluck governments and which staged large protests against the Thaksin government as well พันธมิตรประชาชนเพื่อประชาธิปไตย 
House Speaker – the person who is in charge of most of the activities of the House of Representatives ประธานสภาผู้แทนราษฎร
adjourn – to temporarily end something such as a meeting or a trial ปิด (ประชุม)
deliberation – considering or discussing something การปรึกษาหารือ
reconciliation – the process of creating a new and friendly relationship again with someone you argued with or fought with การปรองดอง
bill – a proposal for a law ร่างกฎหมาย
schedule – to arrange for something to happen at a particular time  ทำตารางเวลา, ทำกำหนดการ, กำหนดรายการ
resume – to begin again after stopping for a period of time  เริ่มอีกครั้ง, กลับมาอีกครั้ง
postponement – delay การเลื่อนออกไป
foundation – an organisation that provides money for things such as medical research or for a charity มูลนิธิ
escalate – to become much worse or more serious เลวลงว  ทำให้เลวลง 
violence – physical force with the deliberate intention of causing damage to property or injury or death to people ความรุนแรง
intersection – a place where roads, lines, etc., join or cross each other สี่แยก
route – the roads used to go from one place to another เส้นทาง
blockade – an action that is intended to prevent people or goods from moving from one place to another การกีดขวางการจราจร
session – a formal meeting of an institution such as a parliament or a court การประชุม
agenda – a list of things that people will discuss at a meeting  ระเบียบวาระ majority – more than 50 percent of a group เสียงส่วนใหญ่
access – the ability or opportunity to enter a building or place  สิทธิ์เข้าสู่ โอกาสในการเข้าสู่

Parliament’s security guards band together to protect House Speaker Somsak Kiatsuranont, seen leaving the parliament chamber. CHANAT KATANYU


Click button to listen to Parliament and rightclick to download

Unity bills given urgency

Somsak calls vote, chaos erupts in House again

POST REPORTERS 

The stage is set for fiery scenes today after House Speaker Somsak Kiatsuranont pushed forward discussion of the reconciliation bills onto today's agenda in parliament.

Yellow shirts opposing the bills have called their supporters back to protest at the House again today, telling them to bring gas masks for protection as they expect to be tear-gassed by security forces.

Dramatic scenes unfolded in parliament, as Democrats staged a walkout after failing to stop Mr Somsak, who was heavily guarded by police, from moving the bills up the agenda for debate today. The opposition attempted to stall debate on the bills by saying they were financially related, as their passage could lead to seized assets worth 46 billion baht being returned to deposed premier Thaksin Shinawatra.

If found to be financially related, the House could not discuss the bills without endorsement from the prime minister.

The situation seemed calm enough early in the day. Here the Democrats present their case to House Speaker Somsak Kiatsuranont. Later in the day they would be jeering him. APICHART JINAKUL


Before parliament voted on the agenda in the afternoon, a meeting of 35 House committee chairmen ruled 22 to 1 that the reconciliation bills were not financially related.

Brushing off boos and jeers from Democrat MPs, Mr Somsak asked the chamber to vote on whether the bills should be discussed today. Some Democrats confronted him at the bench.

Mr Somsak scheduled today's session at 9.30am after the chamber, without the Democrats who had walked out, voted 272 to 2 in favour of accelerating deliberation of the bills. He then adjourned the meeting promptly.

Some Democrats hurled stacks of paper in frustration at the speaker, who was whisked away by security officials.

A small commotion ensued as Pheu Thai MP Jirayu Huangsap and Democrat MP Thani Thaugsuban traded a few heated words.

Suriyasai Katasila, a coordinator of the Green Politics group who has joined the PAD in the fight against the unity bills, said the government's rush to move the measures up the agenda has revealed the hand of Thaksin.

He said Thaksin, who is expected to be among the beneficiaries of the bills if they pass, underestimates the power of the people who oppose him.

He said the Democrats will find one way or another to foil the bills.

Mr Suriyasai said a key sticking point in the reconciliation bills for the opposition is that they will whitewash Thaksin and in the process deal a blow to the justice system.

"Annulling court verdicts is far worse than a coup," he said, he said, referring to the 2008 court verdict which found Thaksin had abused his power.

Democrat leader Abhisit Vejjajiva said yesterday the party would fight against the bills.

Mr Abhisit also said the party had not intended to disrupt parliament meetings over the last two days.

"I know people may be unhappy with what has happened over the last two days. We did not want it to happen," he said.

"I want to apologise to people for only one thing – for not being able to stop the abuse of power in parliament."

band together – to gather; to come together in a group รวมกลุ่ม, รวมตัวกัน
chamber – one of the sections of a parliament ห้อง  ห้องประชุม
unity – a situation in which people, groups, or countries join together or agree about something ความเป็นเอกภาพ, ความเป็นอันหนึ่งอันเดียวกัน
bill – a proposal for a law ร่างกฎหมาย
urgency – the need to deal with something quickly ความจำเป็นเร่งด่วน
chaos – a situation in which everything is confused and in a mess การจราจล
erupt – to start suddenly ปะทุขึ้น
set the stage – to make it possible for something to happen; to make something likely to happen เตรียมพร้อมไว้, เตรียมการไว้
fiery – showing strong emotions, especially anger  เร่าร้อน, เผ็ดร้อน, รุนแรง
reconciliation – the process of creating a new and friendly relationship again with someone you argued with or fought with การปรองดอง
agenda – a list of things that people will discuss at a meeting  ระเบียบวาระ
oppose – to disagree with or not approve of a plan or policy คัดค้าน
protest – to make a strong complaint or disagreement ประท้วง
mask – something that you wear to cover part or all of your face หน้ากาก
gas mask – a mask designed to protect the wearer from dangerous gases หน้ากากป้องกันแก๊ซพิษ
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
dramatic – exciting and impressive ตื่นเต้นเร้าใจ
unfold – to happen, or to develop ปรากฏออกมา
stage – to organise an event or activity จัด
debate – a discussion in which people or groups state different opinions about a subject การอภิปราย, การโต้วาที, การถกเถียง
stall – to delay ทำให้ล่าช้า
financially related – involving money เกี่ยวข้องกับเงิน
seized assets – money or property which have been officially taken away from someone, often by a court order ทรัพย์สินที่ถูกยึดหรืออายัด
deposed – forced from a position of power ที่ถูกปลด ไล่ออกจากตำแหน่ง
endorsement – official approval การรับรอง การลงนามในเอกสาร
calm – peaceful and quiet; without anxiety ใจเย็น,ไม่ตื่นเต้น, สงบ
jeer – to shout or laugh at someone in an unkind way ตะโกนด่า เสียดสี
brush off – to refuse to listen to someone, or to accept that something might be true or important ไม่ยอมรับฟัง
confront - to stand in front of someone in a frightening way เผชิญหน้า
schedule – to arrange for something to happen at a particular time  ทำตารางเวลา, ทำกำหนดการ, กำหนดรายการ
session – a formal meeting of an institution such as a parliament or a court การประชุม
accelerate – to cause to happen more quickly เร่ง
deliberation – considering or discussing something การปรึกษาหารือ
adjourn – to temporarily end something such as a meeting or a trial ปิด (ประชุม)
promptly – in an immediate or quick way ทันที
hurl – to throw something using a lot of force  เขวี้ยง ขว้างปา
stack – a pile of something, usually neatly arranged กองที่ซ้อนกัน, กองสิ่งของที่ซ้อนกันอยู่
frustration – an annoyed or discouraged feeling because you cannot do or have what you want ความผิดหวัง,  ความไม่พอใจ
frustration – an annoyed or discouraged feeling because you cannot do or have what you want ความผิดหวัง,  ความไม่พอใจ
whisk – to move someone or something very quickly – พาออกไปอย่างรวดเร็ว
commotion – a sudden short period of noise, confusion or excited movement ความสับสนวุ่นวาย  
ensue – to happen after something else, often as a result of it ที่ตามมา
trade words – (of two or more people) to say things to each other, often in anger
heated – angry โกรธ, ฉุนเฉียว
coordinator – someone whose job is to organise the various parts of an activity and make sure that all the people involved work well together  ผู้ประสานงาน
People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) – the union of several groups protesting against the Samak, Somchai and Abhisit and now Yingluck governments and which staged large protests against the Thaksin government as well พันธมิตรประชาชนเพื่อประชาธิปไตย  
rush – to move or do something very quickly รีบเร่ง, วิ่ง
measure – an action that is intended to achieve or deal with something มาตราการ
reveal – to let something become known เปิดเผย
beneficiary – a person who gains as the result of something ผู้ได้รับผลประโยชน์
underestimate – to think that someone has less power or ability than they really have ประเมินค่าต่ำกว่า
foil – to prevent something from succeeding ขัดขวาง สกัดกั้น
key – very important ที่สำคัญ
sticking point – something that people do not agree on and that prevents progress in a discussion ทางตัน, มีทางแก้ไขอื่น
the opposition – the political party or parties that are not part of the government ฝ่ายค้าน
whitewash – to try to stop people from discovering the true facts about something, in order to prevent someone in authority from being criticised ปกปิดสิ่งไม่ดี
blow – an event that damages your chances of success สิ่งที่ทำให้เกิดความเสียหาย
justice system – judicial system; a country’s court system ระบบศาลยุติธรรม
annul – to officially end ประกาศว่าเป็นโมฆะ
verdict – a decision by a court of law คำพิพากษา
coup (d’etat) – the seizure of power in a country by a group of people, usually members of the armed forces รัฐประหาร
abuse power – to use of authority in a bad, dishonest or unlawful way ใช้อำนาจในทางที่ผิด
intend – to plan to do; to want to happen ตั้งใจให้เกิดขึ้น, วางแผนไว้
disrupt – to interrupt something and prevent it from continuing by creating a problem ได้รับการกระทบกระเทือน  ถูกทำให้หยุดชะงัก
apologise – to say you are sorry for doing something wrong or for causing a problem ขอโทษ

Related search: Thai parliament, PAD, reconciliation bill

About the author

columnist
Writer: Terry Fredrickson
Position: Education Marketing and Support Manager