A group of drag queens raise their three fingers in solidarity with the protests demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha in Bangkok, Thailand, Sunday, October 25.
Thousands of people protested in Bangkok on Sunday in the first demonstration since Thailand’s Prime Minister ignored their Saturday night deadline to resign.
The protests that began in mid-July have put the greatest pressure in years on the establishment, particularly with taboo-breaking calls to limit the powers of King Maha Vajiralongkorn’s monarchy.
Protesters seek the departure of Prayuth and a new constitution. He rejects their accusation that he engineered last year’s election to keep the power he first took in a 2014 coup. They have also demanded curbs on the monarchy, saying it has enabled decades of military domination.
On Monday, the Thai parliament will open a special session called after protests swelling since August moved Thailand’s prime minister to declare a weeklong state of emergency in the Bangkok area.
Police say they are prepared to handle flare-ups during the session from protesters demanding Prayuth’s resignation and reform of the monarchy.
Unlike past anti-government protests in Thailand that saw two political interests battling each other to assume power, the current movement is led by school and college students pushing for systemic changes. Their movement has evolved with a group of loosely aligned leaders who organize online.
Voice of America – English