Activists end rally after submitting demands
Movement leaders to gather at Parliament on Thursday, call for general strike on Oct 14
Pro-democracy protest leaders ended their overnight rally early Sunday after presenting a list of their demands to the Metropolitan Police Bureau chief.
However, activists plan to gather again on Thursday outside Parliament, while student leader Parit “Penguin” Chiwarak has called on the public to take part in a general strike on Oct 14 — the anniversary of the 1973 student uprising.
The student-led group’s demands controversially include reform of the monarchy, outlined in a 10-point list that leaders wanted to present to the Privy Council.
In a brief but cordial encounter near the Privy Council Chambers, Metropolitan Police Bureau commissioner Pol Lt Gen Pakapong Pongpetra accepted the petition from Panusaya Sithijirawattanakul, a co-leader of the United Front of Thammasat and Demonstration.
The leaders had originally planned to march to Government House but later changed the plan and said they would walk to the chambers in the Grand Palace compound. But they were blocked by police barriers.
Earlier in the morning, demonstrators performed a ceremony to install a plaque to declare the beginning of a new people’s movement.
The movement’s three core demands have been a new constitution, the resignation of the current government an end to harassment of critics of the government.
After the demands were presented to the city police chief, Mr Parit announced the end of the rally, which had drawn tens of thousands of people to Sanam Luang since Saturday afternoon.
However, he said protest leaders would gather again outside Parliament on Thursday, the second day of a two-day debate on motions to amend the constitution.
As well, he said, another event is being planned for Oct 14 at a location to be announced later.