Cops brace for fresh city rallies

Cops brace for fresh city rallies

Members of the Thalugaz movement burn tyres during an anti-government rally in Din Daeng area on Wednesday. (Photo: Nutthawat Wicheanbut)
Members of the Thalugaz movement burn tyres during an anti-government rally in Din Daeng area on Wednesday. (Photo: Nutthawat Wicheanbut)

A total of 2,250 city police are gearing up for Wednesday's anti-government protests in the capital with plans afoot to evacuate lawmakers from parliament if necessary.

Three protest groups -- the Ratsadorn Taliban, Ramkhamhaeng for Democracy and Thalugaz -- are converging at different points in the city today, which coincides with the second day of the no-confidence debate against the government.

Ratsadorn Taliban is converging at Lat Phrao intersection at 2pm, Ramkhamhaeng for Democracy outside parliament at 3pm and Thalugas at Din Daeng intersection, a location where they routinely clash with riot police, according to the Metropolitan Police Bureau (MPB).

MPB deputy commissioner Piya Tawichai reiterated his warning on Tuesday that the protesters are liable to criminal punishment under the emergency decree and the Communicable Disease Control Act now being enforced in Bangkok.

The protest groups planning to gather outside parliament would be closely watched. If they trespass on state property, police would take countermeasures to contain them, using tear gas, water cannon and rubber bullets as a last resort.

The MPB also said that if the protesters defy police warnings and block the entrances to parliament, a plan has been devised to evacuate lawmakers through escape routes, said Pol Maj Gen Piya.

Core protesters wanted on arrest warrants on protest-related charges would be arrested on the spot. However, they may be spared if doing so risked provoking violence and causing unrest.

Last month, charges were laid against 644 protesters, 374 of whom were apprehended.

On Tuesday, the Thalugas group informed protesters via its fan page to take a break from the rally yesterday so they could focus their attention on the censure debate.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha said the authorities were checking to see who has been disrupting the country. He was understood to be referring to any elements behind the protests.

"We have to see who has provided the backing [that led to the violence]," he said, before denying claims that live rounds were used on protesters.


Do you like the content of this article?
COMMENT (25)

Chon Buri car-theft gang busted

Police have seized a total of 64 cars from seven locations in Nonthaburi believed to be used by a gang preying on owners who had pledged their vehicles for loans. The gang refused to return the vehicles and resold them.

15:10

Travellers welcome high season but prices a concern

A majority of people expect high tourism numbers during the peak season in December but remain concerned about their spending power and high prices, according to an opinion survey by Bangkok University, or Bangkok Poll.

15:07

US toughens ban on Huawei and ZTE

WASHINGTON: The US government has banned the sale of new telecommunications equipment made by the Chinese companies Huawei and ZTE, as well as video surveillance equipment from some other companies, citing national security risks.

14:45