PHAN FA BRIDGE, MARCH 23, 2010: Red-shirt leaders at the United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD) main rally site on Phan Fa Bridge have expressed serious concerns over the intent of the Thai government and military following the beefing up of fortifications and military personnel around Parliament House and Chitralada Palace.
A convoy of vehicles traveled from the main rally site to Parliament House this afternoon and upon their return core UDD leaders said they feared a repeat of Songkran 2009 when major incidents were engineered to enable the Thai military to break up the red-shirt rally.
Core UDD leader Jatuporn Prompan said they had asked the military installing the razor wire and cement fortifications why they were deploying them and received no answer. The UDD leaders then asked to speak to a superior officer but none agreed to meet with them.
Mr. Jatuporn said it was estimated there is now more than 10,000 armed soldiers around Parliament House and he feared a repeat of 2009 when violet incidents were “created by infiltrators” enabling the government to declare a state of emergency and use the Thai Army to disperse protesters.
Mr. Jatuporn has called for as many pro-democracy supporters as possible to make their way to Phan Fa Bridge this evening to show the government that Thai people will not be intimidated in this manner.
“Our protest has ben peaceful, controlled and organized so far. There is no reason for this sudden escalation in military personnel, no justification for them to be armed, and no need for hundreds of concrete barricades to be deployed. Thai people, and people around the world, should ask Mr. Abhisit what he is up to.
“The deployment of armed soldiers around Parliament House is a provocative act and one that adequately demonstrates that this government is prepared to go to any length to maintain its grip on power. The rights of ordinary Thai citizens are being continually eroded by this government and it’s time it stopped.
“Mr. Abhisit should immediately dissolve parliament and return the power to the people rather than the risk the prospect of one drop of the peaceful protesting Thai peoples blood being spilled”, he said.
PHAN FA BRIDGE, MARCH 23, 2010: Former deputy prime minister Chaturon Chaisang will address red-shirt protesters from the main stage at Phan Fa Bridge at 7pm this evening. Media representatives and/or bloggers are invited to attend and interview Mr. Chaisang. Note that Mr. Chaisang speaks English and Thai.
Originally a leader of the New Aspiration Party, Mr. Chaisang became an ally of Thaksin Shinawatra when the New Aspiration party merged into Thai Rak Thai after the 2001 general elections.
He was ousted in the 2006 coup that toppled the democratically elected government of Mr. Shinawatra. Mr. Chaisang also held the position of Deputy Minister of Finance.
Please email us at redphanfa2day AT gmail DOT com if interested.
PHAN FA BRIDGE, MARCH 23, 2010: Red-shirts slam government over ISA continuance – Red-shirt leaders at the United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship’s (UDDs) rallying point on Phan Fa Bridge in Bangkok have today slammed the continuation of the Internal Security Act (ISA) by the Thailand government.
UDD leader and media spokesman Jaran Ditapichi said today that there was no reason for the continuation of the ISA, as the red-shirts had demonstrated that their intention was to protest to bring about democracy in Thailand peacefully.
“For the last 10 days we have rallied at various locations around Bangkok; we’ve taken 500,000 people around Bangkok in a motor convoy to a resounding response by Bangkok residents and hosted millions of people at Phan Fa Bridge, all of which has been without incident.
“The continuation of the ISA in Bangkok, Nonthaburi and Samut Prakan is a clear violation of the human rights of Thais and only serves to highlight the dictatorial nature of the Abhisit government”, he said.
The ISA was invoked ahead of the red-shirts rally on March 12 and was due to expire today, however the Thai cabinet voted to continue with the harsh security law until the end of this month.
Mr. Jaran said today that there was no legitimate reason to keep troops on the streets of Bangkok and that the government, by its continued abuse of its powers, was damaging Thailand’s reputation internationally, generating unnecessary fear amongst tourists and business travelers, and hurting the country financially in much the same manner as the People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) had done in 2008 when it seized airports, including Suvarnabhumi Bangkok International Airport, stranding hundreds of thousands of international travelers and holiday makers.
“What we have here is a government that is so desperate to cling to power in the face of overwhelming public support for it to dissolve parliament and return the power to the people that it totally disregards the basic human rights of Thais living in the capital and surrounding provinces.
“Prior to our rally commencing on March 12 the government flooded the media and other mass communications channels with prophecies of bombings, sabotage and violence, all of which have failed to eventuate.
“It’s time this government listened to the overwhelming sentiment of the broader population, dissolved parliament and returned the power to the people”, Mr Jaran said.
PHAN FA BRIDGE, MARCH 23, 2010: 500 red-shirt supporters on motorbikes will today distribute 600,000 of these stickers calling on Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva to dissolve the Thai parliament as part of their pro-democracy fight. The sticker says: “Dissolve parliament”. For image usage rights please see the about page.
สะพานผ่านฟ้า ๒๓ มีนาคม ๒๕๕๓: ขบวนมอเตอร์ไซค์เสื้อแดง 500 คัน จะออกแจกจ่ายสติกเกอร์จำนวน ๖๐๐,๐๐๐ แผ่น เพื่อเรียกร้องให้นายอภิสิทธิ์ เวชชาชีวะ นายกรัฐมนตรี ยุบสภา อันถือเป็นการต่อสู้เพื่อประชาธิปไตย สติกเกอร์มีข้อความ “ยุบสภา” (รายละเอียดการนำภาพไปใช้ โปรดอ่าน about page)
PHAN FA BRIDGE, MARCH 23, 2010: Red shirt leaders and Phue Thai Party officials gave alms to 100 monks at the main red-shirt rally stage on Pha Fa Bridge early this morning. For image usage rights please see the about page.
สะพานผ่านฟ้า ๒๓ มีนาคม ๒๕๕๓: แกนนำเสื้อแดงและสมาชิกพรรคเพื่อไทยได้ร่วมกันทำบุญตักบาตรพระ ๑๐๐ รูปบนเวทีชุมนุมเสื้อแดงที่ตั้งอยู่ที่สะพานผ่านฟ้าเมื่อเช้านี้ (รายละเอียดการนำภาพไปใช้ โปรดอ่าน about page)