Chadchart says BMA will allocate space for protests

Chadchart says BMA will allocate space for protests

A protester makes the three-finger salute during a march against Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha on Ratchadamneon Avenue on Saturday. (AFP photo)
A protester makes the three-finger salute during a march against Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha on Ratchadamneon Avenue on Saturday. (AFP photo)

City Hall is finding an alternative site for people to protest in order to lessen the impact of public demonstrations on commuters and local residents, Bangkok governor Chadchart Sittipunt said on Tuesday.

Speaking at a meeting of Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) executives, the governor said he has been monitoring protests in the city, following fresh anti-government rallies over the weekend by the Thalu Gas movement.

The weekend protest spread to various parts of the capital over the weekend, with some protesters ending up demonstrating around Din Daeng intersection.

Mr Chadchart said he wanted to make it clear that the BMA does not support any form of violence.

To minimise the disruption caused by protests, the BMA will designate a space for residents to express their political views, he said, adding it will help contain protests in one location in order to reduce their impact on local traffic.

The governor said by moving the protests to a designated location, medical responders will have an easier time responding to emergencies, before adding the BMA is responsible for ensuring the safety of both the protesters and passers-by.

The BMA will also dispatch a team to areas surrounding the Din Daeng flats to ensure residents who were affected by past protests receive the help they need, he pledged.

"The BMA isn't in a position to look into the reasons behind these protests, but it is responsible for maintaining peace and order in the city and managing traffic," he said.

Separately, Pol Maj Gen Jirasant Kaewsaeng-ek, a deputy commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Bureau, said the police are moving to identify more people suspected of violating the law at the weekend protests.

On Monday, the police issued an arrest warrant for three people, in connection with an arson attack on a police car during Saturday's anti-government protest, he said.

Move Forward Party MP Rangsiman Rome urged the government to stop renewing the emergency decree every three months. The law has been renewed 18 times in two years despite Covid cases easing.


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