THAILAND Anti government protest update IMPORTANT NEWS 31.12.
New Year festivities are underway at Ratchadamnoen. Come watch open-air movies and musical performances, (let the kids) ride the Ferris wheel and merry-go-round, or play balloon darts and take your best shot at the dunk tank! Activities will continue until the public prayer ceremony around 10 pm. The countdown celebration starts, of course, at midnight.
Security around the area has been tightened. Ratchadamnoen Avenue and Dinsor Road (the Satri Witthaya School side) have been blocked off since morning and guards are heavily stationed at entry-points to ward off disturbances.
Cautionary note: please deliver all donations directly to the Kor Por Tor stage as there are imposters soliciting donations.
The suspect, Pichit Chaimongkol, spokesman of the Network of Students and People for Thailand’s Reform, was arrested by police on Sunday night after he left the protest site at Ratchadamnoen road to Seacon Square shopping mall for some business.
He was later handed over to the DSI to face criminal charges which include illegal trespassing of government buildings at night, incitement of public unrest, intimidation and violation of the Internal Security Act.
Pichit was brought before the court on Tuesday by the DSI which has wanted him to be further detained for 12 more days for interrogation until January 11. The DSI also rejected his bail.
Pichit’s lawyer, Mr Suwat Apaipak, told the court that DSI tried to block Pichit’s temporary release on bail by claiming that the public prosecutor was not present to consider the bail.
However, the court decided to grant him temporary release on a 100,000 baht surety.
Anti-government protesters from the Dhamma Army make homemade bulletproof vests from used X-ray film at their protest site on Makkawan Rangsan bridge. The vests are on sale for 700 baht. THITI WANNAMONTHA
In Phatthalung province, election officials have shifted the venue of the registration from a school to the Muang district police station on Tuesday but protesters have managed to block the officials and candidates from getting in.
In Surat Thani, female protesters wore sarong to prevent police from breaking up the protesters’ siege of the election centre.
In Trang province, about 1,500 protesters have blocked the municipal stadium where registration is to take place. When about 10 candidates from the coalition parties showed up this morning, they were greeted with protesters blowing whistles against them.
More policemen were dispatched to the scene to keep peace but the candidates were unable to get into the stadium and eventually had to leave the scene.
In Nakhon Si Thammarat, election officials have decided to change the venue of candidacy registration to a barrack of the border patrol police in Thung Song district to escape the protesters. It is still not known whether registration can be held or not.