Related News

Home » World

Thais maytake protest to East Asia Summit

PROTESTERS paralyzed traffic in parts of Thailand's capital yesterday and threatened to shift their massive anti-government rally to the seaside East Asia Summit, as authorities assured the 15 heads of state expected to attend this weekend that they will be safe.

Leaders of the protest, which swelled on Wednesday to 100,000 people in Bangkok, said they were debating whether to travel from the capital to the summit's venue in Pattaya, about 145 kilometers south, to apply more pressure on Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva.

The demonstrators are demanding that Abhisit resigns along with the top adviser to the country's revered king. The protesters, supporters of exiled former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, accuse the king's adviser of supporting the 2006 military coup that toppled Thaksin's government.

More than 100 taxi drivers sympathetic to the movement parked and then left their vehicles at one of Bangkok's main traffic circles, Victory Monument, jamming the city's already clogged streets.

"We have asked more taxi drivers to do the same if Abhisit does not resign," said taxi spokesman Kongkiat Janpeum. "There are thousands more of us."

More than 3,000 people joined in the impromptu protest, singing and dancing on the empty streets as leaders took to a makeshift stage to denounce the government.

The East Asia summit involves the 10-nation Association of Southeast Asian Nations and China, Japan, South Korea, India, Australia and New Zealand. Leaders of all the countries except India are expected to attend.

Protest leaders appeared undecided on whether to disrupt the summit.

"If our demands are not met, we may have to go to Pattaya," protest leader Jatuporn Phromphan told demonstrators gathered outside the prime minister's office in Bangkok. "We want to tell our ASEAN friends and other countries to forgive us in advance if this summit cannot take place."


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend