Police ready for red-shirt rally

Police ready for red-shirt rally

The Metropolitan Police Bureau will deploy four companies of police to maintain peace and order at the Democracy Monument where the red-shirt movement is scheduled to hold a mass rally on Sunday.

Police will be deployed in areas near the monument, the Khok Wua and Phan Fa intersections, said Pol Maj Gen Wallop Prathummuang, commander of Metropolitan Police Division 6.

Police expect about 50,000 red-shirts to join the planned mass gathering.

Co-leaders of the United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD) said their protest had two purposes. One is to commemorate the end of the absolute monarchy in Thailand 80 years ago, and the other is to show their opposition to any intervention in the democratic process.

Chairwoman Thida Thavornseth said on Friday that the UDD would also take this opportunity to launch a signature collection campaign to seek the impeachment of the judges of the Constitution Court. She expected to get about 100,000 signatures of people who support the idea.

The UDD believes the court has overstepped its authority by ordering Parliament to suspend consideration of constitutional amendments proposed by the governing Pheu Thai Party.

Demonstrators are also expected to to express their opposition to any future military coup.

Mrs Thida said the mass gathering would begin about noon on Sunday and would end about midnight.

Army chief Prayuth Chan-ocha said on Friday that the UDD had a constitutional right to hold a gathering.

However, he added, the red-shirts must refrain from violence because the country would be severely damaged and no one wants further unrest.

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