11 July 2024

The anti-establishment Khana Ratsadon will hold pork barbecue dinner in front of parliament tomorrow, from 4pm to 9.30pm, as fellow protesters lay siege to parliament to pressure legislators approve the draft constitutional amendment proposed by the iLaw non-governmental organization.

 

According to the Facebook page of the Free Youth group, each barbecue set, for 2-3 persons, which will be served with seafood and suki sauce, is priced at 599 baht and only 30 sets are available. The Free Youth group is urging its supporters to gather in front of parliament from 3pm, to make sure that the iLaw draft will be approved by the lawmakers.

Meanwhile, the pro-Monarchy Thai Pakdee group is urging its supporters to converge in front of parliament at about 9am tomorrow, to avoid a confrontation with the anti-establishment protesters.

 

A key leader of the group, Dr. Warong Dejgitvigrom, told a news conference this morning that his group opposes three draft amendments, one by government MPs, another by opposition MPs and a third by iLaw. He explained that these drafts propose the creation of a Constitution Drafting Assembly to write a new charter, which may pave the way for writing of a clause or several clauses to change the status of the Monarchy.

The Thai Pakdee group, however, supports amending the current charter section by section, but not the entire charter. He also assured that there will be no confrontation with the anti-establishment protesters, as the royalist group will disperse ahead of their arrival.

 

Royalists have accused iLaw of receiving funding from foreign sources, including the Open Society Foundation, of Jewish financial wizard George Soros and, hence, its draft amendment was crafted to favor foreign interests.

It is reported that the two drafts, by government and opposition parties, are likely to be approved in a vote to be taken on Wednesday.

Proponents of the iLaw draft, which has not yet been debated, will be allowed to explain the draft and to answer questions raised by MPs or senators, with several senators and government MPs likely to reject it, or to skip the voting on Wednesday, if they feel alarmed by the siege of parliament.

 

Buddha Isara, a former abbot of Wat Or Noi in Nakhon Pathom and a staunch royalist, warned today of great danger for the country if iLaw’s draft is approved by parliament.

Meanwhile, Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan assured that police have already made preparations to look after the two opposing groups planning to rally tomorrow.

Palang Pracharat, the main government party, is expected to meet today to discuss its stance, vis-à-vis the iLaw draft.