Protesters Clash With Police During Latest Demonstrations

Amid tense scenes on Sunday afternoon, Bangkok police used tear gas, water cannons and rubber bullets to disperse anti-government demonstrations.

Protesters gathered to demand Prime Minister Prayut Cha-o-cha’s resignation and call on the government to be held accountable for its Covid-19 pandemic’s mismanagement.

However, the recently imposed lockdown prohibits gatherings, which created a great deal of tension between the police and the demonstrators in attendance.

The group of activists clashed with the police on Ratchadamnoen Avenue after some people tried to dismantle the metal and barbed wire barricades.

Police had ordered that a total of more than 2,000 officers should be deployed to the area in an effort to counter the rally.

The media reported that some people were injured, adding that protest groups set up an area near Wat Ratchanadda for health volunteers to help them.

After arriving at the Nang Loeng intersection, protesters displayed mock body bags and burned effigies of Prime Minister Gen Prayut.

Pol Maj Gen Piya Tawichai, the deputy commander of the Metropolitan Police Bureau, said that several effigies of the prime minister had been seized to prevent attendees from burning them.

Free Youth movement’s leaders announced via their social media pages that the demonstration was to come to a halt at 6:30 p.m.

Early on Sunday, cars and motorcycles joined the massive protesters’ group marching from the Democracy Monument to the Government House.

Vehicle drivers honked their horns as protesters began marching towards the prime minister’s office.

The Free Youth movement and its allies organized anti-government protests in defiance of the ban on public gatherings.

The protest, resulting in clashes between police officers and civilians, was held at Democracy Monument, a landmark that has been selected by protesters on a number of occasions.

While the group began protesting in 2020, demanding the former junta leader’s removal and the restoration of democracy, they have now added government mismanagement of the pandemic to their gripes.

At Sunday’s rallies, demonstrators displayed simulated body bags, symbolizing the government’s failure to curb the spread of Covid-19.

According to official figures, at least 3,341 people have died since the first outbreak began early last year.

The massive demonstration came despite government restrictions on gatherings of more than five people in Greater Bangkok.

Last week, authorities announced a lockdown in Bangkok and nine other provinces to prevent the further spread of the virus.

Yesterday, health officials also said the lockdown has been extended to August 2 and added three more provinces to the list.