No coup

16 02 2015

As we have posted several times, the core of resistance to the military dictatorship is with students. They have consistently been at the center of opposition. Giles Ji Ungpakorn has some pictures of recent events.

Many readers will have seen that they have been active several times lately. Most recently, on 14 February, Prachatai reports that “a large crowd” turned out for a Valentine’s Day event called “The election that was loved (stolen).” This was an anti-coup activism.

The organizers from the Resistant Citizen group and participants “called for an election and commemorated the latest election on 2 February 2014.”

They were joined by about 100 police officers who “maintained tight control at the event, held in front of the Bangkok Art and Cultural Centre (BACC), Siam Square.”

Prachatai states that Natchacha Kongudom, an anti-coup student activist from Bangkok University said: “Nothing has changed since the coup, martial law is still imposed and of course the election is nowhere in sight. This implies that the military doesn’t have any idea how to govern without martial law.” Natchacha added: “Many people have shown up today which is a good sign. It proves that many are still calling for an election.”

Natchacha called on others for support: “I want Thai students and the foreign and Thai media to do more in pressuring the junta, especially foreign governments who can use diplomatic channels to pressure the regime…”.

Police arrested four activists for organizing the anti-coup event “and charged them with violating the junta’s orders.” They are “Sirawit Serithiwat, a student activist from Thammasat University, Pansak Srithep, a red-shirt activist and the father of a boy killed by the military during the 2010 political violence, Anon Numpa, a human rights lawyer from Thai Lawyers for Human Rights (TLHR), and Wannakiet Chusuwan, a pro-democracy activist.”

While arrested by police , the case will be heard in a military court. They were eventually bailed.

Some 20 anti-coup activists and student activists gathered in front of the police station to provide support for those arrested.  In addiion, “Prinya Thaewanarumitkul, Thammasat University’s Assistanct Rector, Prajak Kongkirati, a lecturer of Thammasat’s Faculty of Political Science and advisor of Sirawit, and Pongkwan Sawasdipakdi , also a lecturer of Thammasat’s Faculty of Political Science, went to the police station to help negotiate with police and give moral courage.”

The four were told told not to hold any more political gatherings or their bail would be revoked.



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