Govt to universities: Stop students' calls for monarchy reform

Govt to universities: Stop students' calls for monarchy reform

FILE PHOTO: Demonstrators welcome Education Minister Nataphol Teepsuwan with a three-fingers salute as anti-government protesters and students attend a demonstration demanding the government resign, in front of the Ministry of Education in Bangkok, Sept 5, 2020. (Reuters file photo)
FILE PHOTO: Demonstrators welcome Education Minister Nataphol Teepsuwan with a three-fingers salute as anti-government protesters and students attend a demonstration demanding the government resign, in front of the Ministry of Education in Bangkok, Sept 5, 2020. (Reuters file photo)

Authorities have told the heads of universities to stop students demanding reform of the monarchy, warning that such calls could lead to violence.

Thailand has faced near daily protests since mid-July calling for the departure of Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, a former junta leader, and for a new constitution and elections.

Some groups have also listed 10 demands to curb the powers of His Majesty the King’s Royal Palace, breaking a long-standing taboo.

Senator Somchai Sawangkarn told Reuters that letters had been sent by provincial governors to university heads, summoning them to meetings ahead of protests planned on Sept 19 in Bangkok and elsewhere.

 

"University administrators should create understanding with the students on this and should put a stop to the demands on the monarchy," he said.

"We did not tell the governors to block the protests but we want them to create understanding with university officials, especially on the 10 demands for the monarchy."

An Interior Ministry official confirmed that such letters had been sent and said it was standard procedure. The Palace did not respond to requests for comment.

Vocabulary

  • administrator (noun): someone whose job is to manage a business, organisation, institution or website - ผู้บริหาร
  • curb: to control or limit something - จำกัดขอบเขต, ควบคุม
  • departure: leaving - การออกจาก
  • junta: a group of military officers that governs a country, usually without having been elected - รัฐบาลทหาร
  • monarchy (noun): the king or queen of a country and their family - ราชวงศ์, พระบรมวงศานุวงศ์
  • procedure: a way of doing something - ขั้นตอนการดำเนินการ
  • protest: a meeting or rally, sometimes forceful or violent, of people who strongly disagree with something - ชุมนุมประท้วง
  • summon: to officially order someone to come to a place - เรียกตัว
  • taboo: something you are not allowed to do; a restriction, a limitation; a no no - ข้อห้าม, สิ่งต้องห้าม

Do you like the content of this article?