Bangkok Rally Ends
Heavy rain and rising tensions put an end to the anti-government rally in Bangkok, Thailand today. The political maneuverings in Bangkok Thailand are not in anyway a threat to tourism or the local economy.
Gen Boonlert Kaewprasit called an end to the protest late Saturday afternoon Bangkok time.
37 people had been reported injured, mostly with cuts and bruises, and 132 arrested, a mild rally by Thailand standards and a reflection of the more peaceful process that Thai’s have adopted over the last few years.
On the rally stage, the retired general made a spirited denunciation of the government.
“It’s time for you to get out because you have shown no capability and righteousness,” he said, referring to Premier Yingluck Shinawatra.
“I’m telling Thaksin that if he wants to return to Thailand, he needs to bow before the king and serve his prison sentence,” he said, referring to the prime minister’s fugitive brother.
Ms Yingluck cancelled all public events on Saturday and was monitoring events from her home.
The rally is taking place on the eve of the no-confidence debate scheduled to start on Sunday in Parliament against the Yingluck government.
Pheu Thai Party spokesman Prompong Nopparit said the governing party supported the censure debate going ahead as planned.
Party leader Charupong Ruangsuwan said earlier that he would propose deferring the debate due to protests, but Pheu Thai members met on Saturday and agreed to go ahead.
The debate is scheduled to last until Tuesday with a vote on Wednesday.
Abhisit said the Opposition has prepared a team of 30 MPs to grill three ministers each day, while the PM will face two days of attack. The subjects of the debate have been well organised in accordance with government policies, he said, adding that he had strongly advised his team not to touch on other topics, otherwise government MPs may resort to delaying the debate by exercising their rights to answer the allegations.
Addressing concerns that the government may raise the subject of his qualifications as an MP over his retroactive dismissal as a military reservist by the Defence Ministry, Abhisit said: “The matter has already been lodged at the Constitution Court. As long as the court has not ruled, I am still qualified. I insist that the ministry’s dismissal order against me is unlawful and I have already filed a suit with the Administrative Court and the National Counter Corruption Commission over the matter,” he said.
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