Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Thailand shuts down online TV channel as protests continue

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Thai protesters raised three-finger salutes to the national anthem at public places across Bangkok yesterday as anti-government rallies continued and the government ordered an online TV channel to close over its coverage of the demonstrations.

The authorities imposed emergency measures banning gatherings of more than four people last Thursday amid growing protests against the government and monarchy.

Two protest leaders, Parit Chiwarak and Panusaya Sithijirawattanakul were arrested on new charges as soon as a court freed them on bail in relation to a previous set of charges.

Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha’s cabinet agreed to an emergency session of parliament next week because of the crisis, but he has said he will not quit as the protesters have demanded.

Prayuth’s supporters have a majority in parliament.

Protesters also want changes to the constitution and a reduction in the powers of the monarchy under King Maha Vajiralongkorn.

The emergency measures only appear to have stoked public anger, but Tuesday turned out to be the quietest day on the streets since the decree was imposed with only a few hundred gathering.