BANGKOK (Reuters) – Thai police warned anti-government protesters planning demonstrations in Bangkok on Saturday that they risked being arrested following an order in a single day that banned public gatherings within the capital and surrounding provinces.
A youth-led protest motion sprang up final 12 months calling for the resignation of Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, a former junta chief, and reform of the highly effective monarchy, and a conflict between police and protesters final week was essentially the most critical to date.
Police used rubber bullets for the primary time final Sunday, in addition to tear gasoline and water cannon to disperse protesters. Ten protesters and 26 police have been injured.
“Protests are unlawful. Anybody who joins or invitations others to hitch is breaking the regulation,” Piya Tavichai, deputy commissioner of Bangkok Metropolitan Police Bureau, instructed a information convention.
He mentioned police won’t implement the ban on gatherings instantly, as long as protesters have been peaceable and didn’t trespass on, or vandalise public or personal properties. He went on to warn of harsher measures if protesters grew to become unruly.
In a podcast on Saturday morning, the prime minister urged Thais to respect the regulation and keep away from battle.
“Now we have to like one another and be united, not divided, and respect the regulation,” mentioned Prayuth, who first got here to energy after main a navy coup in 2014.
4 separate teams of protesters have been planning demonstrations on Saturday, whereas a counter-protest by a pro-royalist group was additionally deliberate. Police have mentioned about four,800 officers can be deployed on the protest areas.
Reporting by Patpicha Tanakasempipat and Panarat Thepgumpanat; Modifying by Simon Cameron-Moore