PDRC-led demonstrations in South, Mae Sot

national January 14, 2014 00:00

By The Nation

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The People's Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) in Surat Thani yesterday brought demonstrators to seal off state offices at the City Hall, as part of a symbolic gesture to run alongside the Bangkok Shutdown.

The demonstrators invited people to join their movement instead of working. They also later sent people to try to shut down other state offices, while schools also temporarily closed to ensure that students were safe.
In Songkhla, the government complex and City Hall, Nakhon Songkhla Municipality, Muang district office and some 10 schools were closed yesterday. Thousands of anti-government protesters rallied outside the Songkhla City Hall, locking the entrances and setting up a stage outside. They also marched down roads in the municipal area to invite people to stop work and join the rally.
In Satun, 100 anti-government protesters marched in the morning to various state offices to invite officials to join a protest near the Satun City Hall later yesterday. Meanwhile, teenagers rode around the city area waving Thai flags and giving colour to the movement in the distant south.
In Trang, about 1,000 anti-government protesters set up a stage in front of the City Hall to call for the caretaker government led by Yingluck Shinawatra to go, before marching to invite others to join the protests. 
They also went to gather outside Trang Governor Somsak Parisuttho Hemthanon’s residence on Phatthalung Road, which state officials are reportedly using as a temporary office, despite a call for all officials not to work, except for those in medicine, national security and disaster prevention and mitigation. 
The rally went on without violence and the protesters later returned to Trang City Hall to wait for instructions from the central PDRC in Bangkok.
In Phattalung, entrances to the City Hall were blocked by anti-government protesters, while 12 schools in Muang district were closed, reportedly to express their civil disobedience, protest leader Charoon Pannarai said. 
He said protesters also blocked an intersection on Asia Highway for one hour to express objection to the “Thaksin regime” and call for reforms before a national election. They were set to proceed to try to close all state offices later until the government is ousted.
In related news, doctors and nurses in Mae Sot in Tak province on the northwest border gathered early yesterday within the local hospital compound to express support for the call for reform before a national election, before returning to work as usual.

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