In Thailand, riot police resorted to water cannons to disperse the protestors gathered in Bangkok demanding reform in the monarchy on Friday, October 16. As per reports, the Thai police used blue coloured water to fire at demonstrators who had assembled for the second day in defiance of “severe” emergency measures introduced this week in response to an unprecedented pro-democracy movement that has swept across Thailand over recent months. As police moved intensified the crackdown, protestors attempted to shield themselves.
In an attempt to disable the protests, the Bangkok police force blocked roads but student leaders reportedly switched their assembly point at the last minute. Earlier in the afternoon, services from key train stations were halted and police raided the offices of the Progressive Movement, a group formed by banned politicians from the disbanded opposition party Future Forward.
On October 15, Thailand’s government issued an emergency decree banning protests and publication of sensitive news amid the escalating demonstrations that have targeted King Maha Vajiralongkorn as well as Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-Ocha. However, this rule was floated by scores of people who came out to show their opposition.
Meanwhile, the Thai government said that urgent measures were needed to maintain peace and order. The officials further justified the new emergency measures partly on the grounds of some protesters disturbing a royal motorcade during a mass rally in Bangkok.
According to BBC reports, once the government announced the emergency order, the police advanced on protesters camped outside the Thai Prime Minister's office. Over 20 people are reported to have been arrested, including three protest leaders. The police said that they detained the demonstrators because they refused to cooperate, reports add.
Image Credits: AP