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Two Thai protest leaders arrested as discontent rises

Two Thai protest leaders arrested as discontent rises

THAILAND: Thai police yesterday (Aug 7) detained two activists in the first arrests against an increasingly bold movement of young protesters calling for democracy and challenging a controversial law that protects the monarchy.

politics
By AFP

Saturday 8 August 2020, 01:03PM


Protesters call for the release of Thai activists Anon Num and Panupong Jadnok outside the Bang Khen police station in Bangkok yesterday (Aug 7). Photo: AFP

Protesters call for the release of Thai activists Anon Num and Panupong Jadnok outside the Bang Khen police station in Bangkok yesterday (Aug 7). Photo: AFP

In recent weeks near daily rallies have been held at universities and town halls across the country to denounce the military-aligned government of Prime Minister Prayut Chan-O-Cha.

Human rights lawyer and activist Anon Numpa, 35, has been one of the most prominent at the creative protests that even included a Harry Potter-themed rally on Tuesday.

Yesterday police read out the charges before detaining Anon outside his home in Bangkok, a move captured on a video that quickly circulated online.

“Inciting unrest among the public...and creating chaos in the kingdom,” said one of the officers surrounding Anon.

Thai Lawyers for Human Rights confirmed the arrest of Anon and fellow activist Panupong Jadnok.

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The group detailed eight charges in total brought against the pair for a rally held at Bangkok’s Democracy Monument on July 18, including sedition and taking part in a gathering that increased the risk of spreading infection.

Protesters have been voicing their rising discontent at Prayut, whose hold on power they regard as a legacy of a royalist junta regime.

No charges have so far been filed under the law against the protesters.

News of the arrests quickly spread on social media and dozens of supporters gathered yesterday evening outside Bang Khen police station, where Anon was being held.

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Kurt | 09 August 2020 - 11:39:09

No way present Government  can control discontent of the population. Selective arrests, no arrest of pro Government demonstrations, just of those who are discontent is just fuelling stronger opposition. It is presently impossible to use army to force a spirit back in the bottle. Than Thailand becomes during the Covid-19 pandemic the butt of the world. 6 Years ago reforms were promised.

 

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