News / Asia

    Thai Protesters Storm Army Headquarters

    Thailand Protesters Continue Bid to Oust Governmenti
    X
    November 29, 2013 5:25 PM
    Anti-government demonstrations by tens of thousands of people continue on the streets of Thailand’s capital. Leaders of the movement say they will keep protesting and occupying government ministries until the country’s prime minister steps down. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Bangkok that security forces this week have not intervened to bar the demonstrators from seizing government buildings and camping out in front of them.
    Thailand Protesters Continue Bid to Oust Government
    Thai protesters briefly stormed into army headquarters in Bangkok in a bid to get the military to join their efforts to topple the government of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra.

    More than 1,000 opposition supporters left the compound peacefully after about two hours. Army Commander General Prayuth Chan-ocha later urged protesters not to force the army to take sides.

    Opposition leaders say Sunday will be their "victory day" and have called for supporters to besiege the prime minister's office. They vow to take over every ministry until the prime ministers resigns.

    A Thai soldier stands as anti-government protesters sit at the Royal Thai Army compound in Bangkok, Thailand, Friday, Nov. 29, 2013.A Thai soldier stands as anti-government protesters sit at the Royal Thai Army compound in Bangkok, Thailand, Friday, Nov. 29, 2013.
    x
    A Thai soldier stands as anti-government protesters sit at the Royal Thai Army compound in Bangkok, Thailand, Friday, Nov. 29, 2013.
    A Thai soldier stands as anti-government protesters sit at the Royal Thai Army compound in Bangkok, Thailand, Friday, Nov. 29, 2013.
    Security forces this week have not intervened to bar the demonstrators from seizing government buildings and camping out in front of them.

    On Thursday, Yingluck easily survived a parliamentary no-confidence vote. But she and her brother, former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, remains a magnet for controversy.

    Many protestors believe Thaksin still runs things here despite the billionaire’s ouster in a 2006 military coup. In self-imposed exile, he faces jail time for corruption convictions should he return home. So far, the military, which has staged 18 coups since the end of absolute monarchy in 1932, is showing no sign of intervening.

    In front of the U.S. Embassy Friday, former finance minister Korn Chatikavanji spoke to protestors as a letter was delivered to the American mission asserting the prime minister’s lack of legitimacy to lead.

    Korn, atop a loudspeaker truck, shouts that they have come to tell the American people what they are doing and all gathered here agree with the contents of the submitted letter.

    The U.S. State Department has referred to the seizure of property and the potential of violence here as “not acceptable means of resolving political differences.”

    An anti-government protester gestures towards riot police outside the headquarters of the ruling Puea Thai Party of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra in Bangkok, Nov. 29, 2013.An anti-government protester gestures towards riot police outside the headquarters of the ruling Puea Thai Party of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra in Bangkok, Nov. 29, 2013.
    x
    An anti-government protester gestures towards riot police outside the headquarters of the ruling Puea Thai Party of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra in Bangkok, Nov. 29, 2013.
    An anti-government protester gestures towards riot police outside the headquarters of the ruling Puea Thai Party of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra in Bangkok, Nov. 29, 2013.
    Among the thousands joining the protest in front of the embassy, life insurance company employee Patthanapong Yamngarmlua.

    “We don't like this government. We need them to get out of this country," said Patthanapong. "And, of course, including their family, also.”

    Yingluck has been prime minister since her PueaThai party’s landslide election victory in 2011.

    At the forefront of the opposition to her and her brother is former deputy prime minister Suthep Thaugsuban.

    He wants a “people’s council” established to select a new prime minister and enhancing the power of the monarchy, headed by the country’s ailing 85-year-old King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

    A travel agency employee, identifying herself only as Sivaporn, agrees with those goals.

    She says she does not know whether the movement will lead to change but everyone is giving their utmost every day and that is the best they can do.

    While the anti-government demonstrations resemble more of a festival than a revolution, there are concerns that the mood could quickly change.

    Steve Herman

    A veteran journalist, Steve Herman is VOA's Southeast Asia Bureau Chief and Correspondent, based in Bangkok.

    You May Like

    US Internet Giants, EU Reach Deal to Combat Online Hate Speech

    Facebook, Twitter, Google and Microsoft commit to ‘quickly and efficiently’ act to clamp down on use of social media to incite violence, terror

    Tunisia’s Ennahda Party Begins a New Political Chapter

    Party now moves to separate its political and religious activities; change described by party members as pragmatic response to political and economic challenges facing Tunisia today

    Virtual Reality Fine-tuned at Asia Tech Show

    Microchip designers hope to improve resolution for users of systems that can turn your bedroom into the ocean floor

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Tech Startups Showcase Wares at Amsterdam Conferencei
    X
    Serginho Roosblad
    May 30, 2016 5:11 PM
    More than 20,000 tech enthusiasts, entrepreneurs and lovers of digital technology came together in Amsterdam recently at the Next Web Conference to discuss the latest developments in digital technology, look to the future and, of course, to connect. In recent years, there has been an explosion of so-called startup businesses that have created devices and applications that have changed the way we live; but, as Serginho Roosblad reports for VOA, there are pitfalls for such startups as well.
    Video

    Video Tech Startups Showcase Wares at Amsterdam Conference

    More than 20,000 tech enthusiasts, entrepreneurs and lovers of digital technology came together in Amsterdam recently at the Next Web Conference to discuss the latest developments in digital technology, look to the future and, of course, to connect. In recent years, there has been an explosion of so-called startup businesses that have created devices and applications that have changed the way we live; but, as Serginho Roosblad reports for VOA, there are pitfalls for such startups as well.
    Video

    Video US Military's Fallen Honored With Flags

    Memorial Day is a long weekend for most Americans. For some, it is the unofficial start of summer -- local swimming pools open and outdoor grilling season begins. But Memorial Day remains true to its origins -- a day to remember the U.S. military's fallen.
    Video

    Video Rolling Thunder Rolls Into Washington

    The Rolling Thunder caravan of motorcycles rolled into Washington Sunday, to support the U.S. military on the country's Memorial Day weekend
    Video

    Video A New Reading Program Pairs Kids with Dogs

    Dogs, it is said, are man's best friend. What some researchers have discovered is that they can also be a friend to a struggling reader. A group called Intermountain Therapy Animals trains dogs to help all kinds of kids with reading problems — from those with special needs to those for whom English is a second language. Faiza Elmasry has more on the New York chapter of R.E.A.D., or Reading Education Assistance Dogs, in this piece narrated by Faith Lapidus.
    Video

    Video Fan Base Grows for Fictional Wyoming Sheriff Longmire

    Around the world, the most enduring symbol of the U.S. is that of the cowboy. A very small percentage of Americans live in Western rural areas, and fewer still are cowboys. But the fascination with the American West is kept alive by such cultural offerings as “Longmire,” a series of books and TV episodes about a fictional Wyoming sheriff. VOA’s Greg Flakus recently spoke with Longmire’s creator, Craig Johnson, and filed this report from Houston.
    Video

    Video Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trend

    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Reactions to Trump's Success Polarized Abroad

    What seemed impossible less than a year ago is now almost a certainty. New York real estate mogul Donald Trump has won the number of delegates needed to secure the Republican presidential nomination. The prospect has sparked as much controversy abroad as it has in the United States. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Drawings by Children in Hiroshima Show Hope and Peace

    On Friday, President Barack Obama will visit Hiroshima, Japan, the first American president to do so while in office. In August 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the city to force Japan's surrender in World War II. Although their city lay in ruins, some Hiroshima schoolchildren drew pictures of hope and peace. The former students and their drawings are now part of a documentary called “Pictures from a Hiroshima Schoolyard.” VOA's Deborah Block has the story.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese Rapper Performs for Obama

    A prominent young Vietnamese artist told President Obama said she faced roadblocks as a woman rapper, and asked the president about government support for the arts. He asked her to rap, and he even offered to provide a base beat for her. Watch what happened.
    Video

    Video Roots Run Deep for Tunisia's Dwindling Jewish Community

    This week, hundreds of Jewish pilgrims are defying terrorist threats to celebrate an ancient religious festival on the Tunisian island of Djerba. The festivities cast a spotlight on North Africa's once-vibrant Jewish population that has all but died out in recent decades. Despite rising threats of militant Islam and the country's battered economy, one of the Arab world's last Jewish communities is staying put and nurturing a new generation. VOA’s Lisa Bryant reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora