Protest action resumes in Bangkok, farmers burst into tears

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Thai protestsAfter a period of party-like harmless street blockades, anti-government protesters in Bangkok have taken action again, and this time they are supported by thousands of angry rice farmers.

On February 17, rally leader Suthep Thaugsuban led protesters on a march to Government House to prevent caretaker premier Yingluck Shinawatra from working there “in this life or the next,” as he dramatically put it. The protesters set up a stage at Government House from where their leaders will take turns to speak out against the government. They say they will stay overnight possibly until February 19.

Suthep and other core leaders helped block the Government House by pouring cement into the moulds of the barriers police had set up.

The move came after the announcement by Chalerm Yubamrung, chief of the Center for Maintaining Peace and Order (CMPO), that the area around Government House would be cleared for Yingluck’s return. She said that she would go back to Government House only after security and access was guaranteed for her and the officials working there.

Yingluck has been using the Royal Air Force head office at Don Mueang air base, the Army Club on Vibhavadi Rangsit Road and the Defense Ministry’s office of the permanent secretary in in Muang Thong Thani for cabinet and security meetings.

Protesters also entered the Education Ministry premises and asked officials there to stop work and join their anti-government protest.

Meanwhile, at noon on February 17, hundreds of farmers seeking a meeting with Yingluck broke into compound of the office of permanent secretary of defense. Police and military personnel were deployed around the defense building and razor wire barricades erected to keep the protesters out. However, they tore down barbed wire as they attempted to meet with the caretaker prime minister. The office sent two military officers to talk to the farmers. Many of the farmers started crying as they talked to negotiators.

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

After a period of party-like harmless street blockades, anti-government protesters in Bangkok have taken action again, and this time they are supported by thousands of angry rice farmers.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Thai protestsAfter a period of party-like harmless street blockades, anti-government protesters in Bangkok have taken action again, and this time they are supported by thousands of angry rice farmers.

On February 17, rally leader Suthep Thaugsuban led protesters on a march to Government House to prevent caretaker premier Yingluck Shinawatra from working there “in this life or the next,” as he dramatically put it. The protesters set up a stage at Government House from where their leaders will take turns to speak out against the government. They say they will stay overnight possibly until February 19.

Suthep and other core leaders helped block the Government House by pouring cement into the moulds of the barriers police had set up.

The move came after the announcement by Chalerm Yubamrung, chief of the Center for Maintaining Peace and Order (CMPO), that the area around Government House would be cleared for Yingluck’s return. She said that she would go back to Government House only after security and access was guaranteed for her and the officials working there.

Yingluck has been using the Royal Air Force head office at Don Mueang air base, the Army Club on Vibhavadi Rangsit Road and the Defense Ministry’s office of the permanent secretary in in Muang Thong Thani for cabinet and security meetings.

Protesters also entered the Education Ministry premises and asked officials there to stop work and join their anti-government protest.

Meanwhile, at noon on February 17, hundreds of farmers seeking a meeting with Yingluck broke into compound of the office of permanent secretary of defense. Police and military personnel were deployed around the defense building and razor wire barricades erected to keep the protesters out. However, they tore down barbed wire as they attempted to meet with the caretaker prime minister. The office sent two military officers to talk to the farmers. Many of the farmers started crying as they talked to negotiators.

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