Several heroes of Thailand’s Democratic movement emerged yesterday, one being an middle age women who tipped toed among a group of Fascist Suthep people, sitting on the street to block passage to the voting booth. She was eventually pulled down. Another hero was a young women who climbed a high fence in front of a voting venue, where Fascist Suthep prople shut the fence and locked the gate. Another is a young man who was violently attacked on his way to voting.
Several Thai press reports the US is “deeply troubled” by anti-government protests that blocked advance general election voting on Sunday, quoting a statement from the Department of State. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki insisted that the US takes no sides in Thailand’s ongoing political dispute. She said that the US strongly supports freedom of expression and the right to peaceful protest, but said preventing citizens from voting violates their universal rights and is inconsistent with democraticvalues. Ms Psaki reiterated a call for all sides of the political divide to refrain from violence, exercise restraint, and commit to sincere dialogue to resolve their differences peacefully and democratically.
Local press reports Thailand’s ruling party, Pheu Thai party, said on Monday for elections to go ahead, despite disruption to advance voting by opposition protesters who besieged polling stations Sunday and stopped hundreds of thousands from casting ballots. Of about 400 ballot casting location, about 100 were disrupted.
Yingluck is due to meet election authorities Tuesday to discuss a possible delay to the Feb. 2 general election, after the Constitutional Court ruled that the polls could legally be pushed back because of the civil strife. But the head of her Puea Thai Party said Monday he opposed a postponement and accused the Election Commission (EC) of not doing enough to ensure an orderly vote.
“The EC is authorized to hold the election and Puea Thai as a political party fielding candidates does not agree with a postponement or delay to the election,” Jarupong Ruangsuwan told AFP. “The EC is stubborn and wants the election to be postponed,” he said. “I think the Constitutional Court and the EC are coordinating with the protesters.”
Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra has faced nearly three months of mass street demonstrations demanding her elected government step down to make way for an unelected “people’s council” that would oversee reforms aimed at curbing the dominance of her billionaire family. Ten people have been killed and hundreds injured in grenade attacks, drive-by shootings and street clashes since the protests began at the end of October.
Protest leader Suthep Thaugsuban has threatened to “close every route” to polling stations again this coming Sunday, saying the election would not be allowed to take place. Apart from Bangkok and Southern Thailand, the Abhisit’s Dems voter base, pre-election vote casting all over Thailand went ahead with no problems.