White-masked coup fans opposed

Calls for a military coup by some participants in the white-mask protest group are unacceptable, say 55% of people surveyed by Abac Poll.

The pollsters at Assumption University based their conclusion on interviews this week with 1,384 people in Bangkok and nearby provinces.

Gatherings of people wearing white Guy Fawkes masks, popularised in the 2005 movie V for Vendetta, have been staged in various parts of the country against the Pheu Thai government.

The white-mask group claims no official leaders or spokesmen, but some of those taking part have said they favour the return of the military. This has led Pheu Thai supporters to claim that hardliners from the yellow-shirt People's Alliance for Democracy are behind the white-mask movement.

Abac Poll reported that 54.9% of its respondents said demands for a military coup were inappropriate, while 11.6% disagreed and 33.6% offered no opinion.

In addition, 50.3% of the respondents said rallies by white-masked protesters and red-masked backers of the government could lead to political confrontation and violence.

Abac said 64.2% of respondents were unsure whether the government could prevent matters from getting out of hand because it was facing many problems, but 35.8% disagreed, saying most people did not want violence.

The pollsters said 56.7% of respondents believed any move by the opposition party to support masked protesters was not appropriate, but 43.3% disagreed.

Asked for suggestions about ways to defuse political tensions, 25.8% said the government should listen to the points of view of all parties and settle problems through discussions; 13.6% said the government must work with transparency and without corruption; and 13.5% said problems should be resolved with justice, without the use of force.

Related search: Thailand, political protest, white masks, V for Vendetta, military coup, Abac poll

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