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Pro-democracy protesters begin 250km march to Bangkok


Pro-democracy protesters led by Jatupat “Pai Dao Din” Boonpattararaksa began a march from Nakhon Ratchasima to Bangkok on Tuesday morning, calling on authorities to release four fellow protesters, including Parit “Penguin” Chiwarak.

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Pro-democracy protesters begin 250km march to Bangkok

On February 9, the Criminal Court denied bail to Parit and three other Ratsadon pro-democracy leaders – Arnon Nampa, Somyos Prueksakasemsuk and Patiwat “Bank” Saraiyam.

Pro-democracy protesters begin 250km march to Bangkok

The four are accused of lese majeste law and sedition over their role in an anti-government rally at Thammasat University’s Tha Prachan campus last September.

Pro-democracy protesters begin 250km march to Bangkok

Parit was also charged for participating in the “Mob Fest” rally on Ratchadamnoen Road on November 14-15.

Pro-democracy protesters begin 250km march to Bangkok

The marchers are walking from Nakhon Ratchasima’s Thao Suranari Monument to Bangkok’s Democracy Monument – a distance of about 250 kilometres.

Pro-democracy protesters begin 250km march to Bangkok

Separately, members of a royalist network gathered before Parliament on Tuesday afternoon to submit a petition opposing any change to the lese majeste law (Article 112).

Pro-democracy protesters begin 250km march to Bangkok

Pansuwan Nakaew, a representative of the group, said it was right that those who defame the monarchy should be punished by the lese majeste law. He added that several countries also had laws to protect their monarchies.

Pro-democracy protesters begin 250km march to Bangkok

Democrat Party spokesperson Rames Rattanachaweng accepted the letter on behalf of the House speaker, who was busy overseeing the censure debate in Parliament.

The gathering dispersed soon after.

 

Published : February 16, 2021

By : THE NATION