Prayut defends cops over rally

Prayut defends cops over rally

Police in crowd control gear Sunday night clash with protesters near the 1st Infantry Regiment barracks on Vibhavadi Rangsit Road. (Photo by Wichan Charoenkiatpakul)
Police in crowd control gear Sunday night clash with protesters near the 1st Infantry Regiment barracks on Vibhavadi Rangsit Road. (Photo by Wichan Charoenkiatpakul)

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha on Monday defended police's handling of an anti-government rally on Sunday in front of the 1st Infantry Regiment barracks, King's Guard, insisting crowd-control measures were in compliance with international standards.

Riot police from the Metropolitan Police Bureau (MPB) used tear gas and water cannon to block the protesters from approaching the prime minister's residence in the barracks. They also fired rubber bullets at protesters.

In defence of police actions, Gen Prayut said the protesters had advanced into police and restricted areas and assaulted police officers.

"I insist the crowd-control measures were in accordance with international standards and police did not violate the protesters' rights," Gen Prayut said.

The rally was organised by Restart Democracy (REDEM), a recently formed offshoot of the Free Youth group that had previously rallied against the government and campaigned for reforms of the monarchy.

The prime minister criticised some media outlets for what he claimed were unbalanced reports about clashes between protesters and police, saying they only carried reports about the police's use of force against protesters.

Gen Prayut also expressed sympathy for police who were told to exercise restraint in the face of violence and ended up injured.

Thirty-three people, 23 police and 10 protesters, were confirmed injured during Sunday's rally. Twenty-two protesters were detained by police.

The opposition Pheu Thai and Move Forward parties on Monday deplored the use of force against the protesters and called on police to follow international standard procedures in crowd-control operations.

Vocabulary

  • assault: to attack someone violently - ทำร้ายร่างกาย
  • barracks: a group of buildings where members of the armed forces live and work - โรงหรืออาคารใหญ่เป็นที่พักทหาร
  • deplore: to dislike something very much, often because you think it is highly improper - คัดค้าน  สังเวชใจ  เสียใจ
  • exercise: to use - ใช้
  • in accordance with: following a rule or system; also in line with and consistent with - สอดคล้องกับ
  • measure: a firm action taken to solve a problem or stop a dangerous unpleasant situation - มาตราการ
  • offshoot: a company, group, or organization that has developed from a larger one - สิ่งที่แตกสาขาออกมา, สาขา
  • rally: a large public gathering of people to support someone or to protest against something - การชุมนุม
  • restraint: the quality of behaving calmly and with control - การอดกลั้น
  • sympathy: a natural feeling of kindness and understanding that you have for someone who is experiencing something very unpleasant - ความเห็นอกเห็นใจ
  • violate: to do something that is against a law, rule or agreement - ฝ่าฝืน, ละเมิด
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