Protesters run as police fire rubber bullets and tear gas during a demonstration against Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-O-Cha and his government’s handling of the Covid-19 Coronavirus crisis in Bangkok on September 6, 2021. Jack TAYLOR / AFP
Police have to strictly enforce the law against hard core “Talugas” protesters at Din Daeng intersection, because they are troublemakers and a danger to the public, said Pol Maj-Gen Piya Tavichai, deputy commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Bureau, today (Tuesday).
He alleged that the protesters had destroyed lighting, electrical control systems, air ventilation, CCTV and water drainage systems at the intersection, which poses a danger to motorists and motorcyclists travelling through the underpass, particularly during heavy rain.
Officials from the water drainage office of Bangkok Metropolitan Administration have been assessing the damage and plan to file a complaint with the police against the vandals, he added.
Pol Maj-Gen Piya said that, during previous protests, police would warn the protesters periodically that there were breaking the law before making the arrests, but yesterday, police moved in to make arrests without warning, after several of protesters hurled missiles, including firecrackers, cherry bombs and flares, into the compound of the Army Brass Band Department on the outbound Vibhavadi Rangsit highway, near the First Infantry Regiment of the Royal Guards.
18 protesters, including nine under aged youths, were arrested and 31 motorcycles were seized by the police yesterday.
The deputy commissioner said that parents of the young protesters will be summoned for questioning by the police, adding that they may face charges under the Child Protection Act for not restraining their children.
Four protest groups are scheduled to rally today in different parts of Bangkok:
- The Ramkhamhaeng for Democracy group rally in front of Government House at 10 am.
- The “car mob” group, led by former red-shirt leader Nattawut Saikua and political activist Sombat Boonngamanong, to gather at Ratchaprasong intersection at 4pm, before marching to Asoke-Sukhumvit intersection.
- The “Talufah” group will rally at the Victory Monument at 4pm.
- The “Talugas” group plan to gather at Din Daeng intersection in the late afternoon.
Pol Maj-Gen Piya warned all the protest groups that they will be violating the Emergency Decree and the Communicable Diseases Act, adding that the police are ready to maintain peace and order and facilitate traffic flow in the affected areas.