11 July 2024

Sixteen anti-government protesters, who were involved in the protest near Bangkok’s Government House on Sunday, were arrested by the police last night for allegedly violating the Emergency Decree and the Communicable Diseases Act.

According to the Metropolitan Police Bureau, the protesters were arrested at four separate locations in and around Bangkok.

The police had followed the suspects as they started leaving the protest site, at the Nang Lerng intersection, after the protest’s leader announced an end to the rally at about 6pm, until they saw an opportunity to make the arrests.

One of the suspects, 36-year-old Thanadet Srisongkhram, or “Mon”, had an arrest warrant issued by the Nonthaburi provincial court. Thanadet was apprehended on Pahonyothin Road, in Bang Khen district at about 8pm, in his pickup truck.  He was later escorted to Nonthaburi police station, before being sent to the Region 1 Border Patrol Police Command in Pathum Thani for questioning and detention.

Four of the suspects caught are youth aged between 15 and 17. 14 slingshots and 70 glass pellets, one fixed-blade knife and one pocket knife were found in a vehicle many of the protesters were caught in. 

The protesters rallied at the Democracy Monument before marching toward Government House, only to be met by riot police deployed behind steel barricades and razor wire. Violence broke out when some of the protesters, among them “WeVo” guards, tried to break through the barricade, prompting police to respond with water cannons, tear gas and rubber bullets. Several protesters were injured.

Core leaders of the Ratsadon group, including Anon Nampa, who earlier said they would join the protest, were absent.

The protesters want the unconditional resignation of Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, mRNA vaccines and cuts to the budgets for the palace and the military.