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CMPO seeks understanding over inability to control rallies

The government's Centre for Maintaining Peace and Order (CMPO) called for understanding from the public yesterday about its inability to enforce the law and control anti-government rallies following Civil Court's ruling on Wednesday.

CMPO member Tarit Pengdith, who also heads the Department of Special Investigation, said: "I expect more protests next week as there are many people agreeing and dis?agreeing with the PDRC [People's Democratic Reform Committee] and now there is no law to control. That's why they [will] come.

"My concern is their self-management and no government agency to enforce the law. The only thing the CMPO can do right now is to pray. We beg good legal experts to guide us, not for the CMPO, but for the country."

He said CMPO chief Chalerm Yoobamrung would file criminal suit against PDRC secretary-general Suthep Thaugsuban and his group for allegedly using guns and other arms to attack and kill police during a clash on Tuesday.

The protest leaders also said on Thursday they would file criminal suit against caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and CMPO leaders for murder over the same clash, in which five people were killed, including a police officer.

National Security Council secretary-general Lt General Paradorn Pattanatabut, another CMPO mem?ber, said the agency was looking into three alternatives to enforce the law while appealing the Civil Court ruling, which restricts the CMPO's options.

The alternatives include the use of existing laws, invoking special laws such as the Internal Security Act and cancellation of the Emergency Decree and invoking a new one which would be free from the Civil Court's nine restrictions.

Chalerm said he had signed an appeal to the Civil Court and also asked the court to withhold its ruling.

A group of red shirts rallied outside the Civil Court yesterday and laid a wreath in a protest at the court's ruling on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, lawyers for PDRC leaders have petitioned the Criminal Court, asking it to revoke arrest warrants for 18 PDRC core leaders and 13 key members and citing the Civil Court's ruling on Wednesday that said the PDRC had been rallying peacefully

Criminal Court scheduled Thursday (February 27) to decide whether to revoke the warrants for Suthep Thaugsuban and 17 other core leaders of the PDRC.

It also scheduled Monday to decide whether to revoke warrants for 13 key leaders including monk Buddha Issara.

PDRC spokesman Akanat Promphan said the movement would give Bt1 million to the family of protesters killed on Tuesday, and a further Bt2 million given if victims have children.


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