11 July 2024

Anti-government protesters, who gathered at the Victory Monument and Asoke intersection in Bangkok and started dispersing after 8pm today, claim that Thailand has a new protest model, which does not need a leader or rally stage.

Protest organizers declared that every protester is a “core” protester and anyone can address the crowd by just standing on a chair and speaking through a bull horn.

Besides the two large rallies at Victory Monument and Asoke intersection, each of which drew tens of thousands of people chanting for Prime Minister Prayut to step down, it appears that similar gatherings have started to take place in many provinces across Thailand, to the refrain of “Prayut Out” resonating nationwide.

Protests at most venues were reported to be peaceful, dispersed smoothly and on time. As has become usual, no venues or times for tomorrow’s protests in Bangkok have been announced, as protest organizers do not want to pre-warn the authorities.

Ms. Chonthicha Jaengrew, one of the more prominent protesters, still eludes arrest and announced that the protests can now organize without a leader, because they all share a common resolve, with the Prime Minister’s resignation being the top priority.

Chairman of the United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD), Jatuporn Promphan, said on Peace TV tonight that Prime Minister Prayut’s resignation is the only the way out of this political crisis, adding “Today, the Prime Minister asked what he had done wrong, to which the answer is that he erred by seizing power in a military coup about six years ago.”

He said that the only right thing for the Prime Minister to do now is to step down, adding that, without the current Prime Minister, amending the Constitution will be much easier and could be done in just one day, like the 1992 charter.

The Red-Shirt Movement leader said that the current protests in Thailand are unique and are not like those in Hong Kong.

Jatuporn noted that the Government used lethal force to break up the Red-Shirt protests in 2009 and 2010, but the Prayut administration used chemical-laced water jets, which was considered by some to be lenient, to deal with the young protesters, and the result was different.

The use of irritant laced water jets against the young protesters is regarded as violence by many people, which the Government had not expected, he added.