Royalists affiliated with the Thai Pakdee group gathered at the Bangkok Youth Center on Sunday, August 30, in opposition to ongoing protests calling for the dissolution of parliament and the creation of a new constitution which includes reforms to the power of the monarchy. Some 1200 people took part in the event, which remained peaceful.
Further protests and counter-protests are expected over the near term. A heightened security presence and localized transportation disruptions are likely in the vicinity of any protests.
Public opposition has grown against Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha's over government spending, the dissolution of an opposition party, and many other factors. Activists have also called for reforms to the powers of the monarchy. Protests on an increasing scale have been held in Bangkok and other locations across Thailand in recent weeks. Counter protests have also been held, particularly in support of the monarchy.
On August 8, student groups officially launched the Free People group, which has grown out of the previous Free Youth movement responsible for much of the recent protest activity. On August 16, 10,000 people took part in a demonstration organized by the group in Bangkok, one of the largest protests to be held since the coup in 2014. At least ten people were arrested by police. Protests organized by student groups have since been occurring in Bangkok on a near-daily basis.
Those in Bangkok and across Thailand are advised to monitor developments, avoid all protests as a precaution, and adhere to all instructions issued by local authorities.
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