Udayavni Special

Why are people protesting in Thailand?


Team Udayavani, Sep 20, 2020, 5:16 PM IST

Several people are protesting in the Thai capital Bangkok calling for reform of the political system, including the role of the monarchy.

It is said that it was one of the biggest protests in years However, there were no reports of violence

The protesters are rallying against the government of Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha. The former army chief led a coup in 2014 and kept the kingdom under military rule for five years.

The political unrest began in February after a court ordered a fledgling pro-democracy opposition party to dissolve.

According to BBC, Protests were re-energised in June when prominent pro-democracy activist Wanchalearm Satsaksit went missing in Cambodia, where he had been in exile since the 2014 military coup. Protesters blame Thai state and claim that they are involved in his kidnappingUnder the military government, a new constitution was drafted before elections were held last year. Prayut was voted in to lead a civilian government, a win analysts say was tilted by the new charter’s provisions. Protesters are calling for parliament to be dissolved, the constitution rewritten and an end to the harassment they are facing.

They also have a list of 10 demands for the monarchy, including throwing out a defamation law that shields the powerful royal family from criticism.

Protestors have installed a plaque declaring Thailand “belongs to the people”, in a bold show of opposition to the monarchy.

The plaque was laid near Bangkok’s Grand Palace in the latest challenge to Thai King Maha Vajiralongkorn.

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