Updated: Coup anniversary

19 09 2015

After first attempting to prevent a commemoration of the 2006 overthrow of the Thaksin Shinawatra government by a military coup, the military dictatorship permitted the Neo-Democracy Movement to conduct a panel discussion and a rally.

The movement had ignored a written warning to call the rally off. The authorities stated that it would “not allow any activity which may affect peace and order.” They stated that only events inside the Thammasat campus would be permitted.

Speakers at the commemoration were to include activist Sombat Boonngamanong, “who was among one of the first who protested the 2006 coup nine years ago, and political scientist Puangthong Pawakapan.”

The members of the Neo-Democracy Movement “are still facing criminal charges for an anti-junta march in June at the Democracy Monument.”

Some reports of the discussion at Thammasat are included in a Khaosod report.

The demonstrators marched from the Thammasat Tha Prachan campus to the Democracy Monument. As well as the video below, Prachatai has a collection of pictures of the march and rally.

Banners carried by marchers included messages such as “Return power to the people!” and “Down to dictators!”

While there were no clashes or arrests reported, it is unclear if charges await the protest leaders.

Update: The Bangkok Post has more details on the discussion at Thammasat, noting that the police prevented the use of the room originally booked, forcing a move to another building. One speaker observed: “Nine years and two coups later and we’re still stuck, with no light at the end of the tunnel…”.


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