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I don't think so - wish full thinking for the pro democracy group


PAD lay seige on Gov't House


BANGKOK: -- Shortly after 6.00 am on Tuesday, the People's Alliance for Democracy successfully blocked every entrance of Government House. Protesters managed to partially blocked telephone connections and periodically switched off the electricity.


Hundreds of policemen were deployed inside the compound to deter protesters from raiding.


It is evident that the seat of government could not open for business and that the weekly Cabinet meeting could not be held at Government House as has been planned.


It is also unclear whether Samak will chair a meeting of military commanders at Government House to debate the annual military rotations as has been planned. Many see the planned meeting as a government ploy to involve the top brass to try and disperse the protesters.


Reporters have flocked to the residence of Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej to await his reactions. Samak refused to talk at this juncture.


-- The Nation 2008-08-26


Protestes who protest at government-run tv station detained


BANGKOK: -- Police detained on Tuesday leaders of People Alliance for Democracy who tried to seize a government-run television station on Vipavadi Rangsit Road.


Around 5.00 am on Tuesday, a number of men raided the station of state-run NBTChannel, switched off electricity to disrupt the broadcast, cut off telephone connections and caused damages to property, police deputy spokesman Maj General Suraphol Thuanthong said.


Many station workers and newsroom staffers were told to move out of the way during the raid by the men wielding sticks.


Policemen rushed to counter the raid and arrested some suspects for questioning. The raid was suspected to be a part of the mass rally organised by the People's Alliance for Democracy.


NBT station partially resumed broadcase shortly after police ended the raise.


-- The Nation 2008-08-26




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From The Nation:


PAD is trying to seize power and depose gov't: Natthawut



Government deputy spokesman Natthawut Saikua claimed on Wednesday that the People's Alliance for Democracy was coordinating with an underground movement to incite a coup to oust the government.


Natthawut said authorities might have to round up selected protest leaders and certain generals who are working behind-the-scene with the PAD.


He said a general met with PAD leader Sondhi Limthongkul on Tuesday's night to finalise a plan to use the PAD as a catalyst for coup.


He said the PAD has planned to disrupt the government from functioning in selected areas in the capital and upcountry. If left unchecked, the PAD might try to raid key airports and provincial halls along with trying to control strategic locations in the capital.


The Nation


end quote


Oddly I can't get into Bangkok Post web site :(

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From BKK Post


Nattaya Chetchotiros and Pradit Ruangdit


The People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD) is betting its future on Tuesday's showdown with the government with confidence that Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej and his cabinet will be toppled.


Calling today's showdown "the last whistleblow", Sondhi Limthongkul, one of the PAD leaders said: "If we fail this time, we'll quit and surrender the country to them. When people don't care about us, we won't have to care about them. Let others take over the country."


But the group, which has staged the protest rally since May 25, will face defiance from the prime minister, who refused to bow to any move outside parliament to force him to step down.


The government came to power legally and the only way to remove it from power should be through parliamentary means, Mr Samak said.


"As prime minister, I am duty-bound to keep law and order in the country. Demonstrations must be kept within legal limits. If they go beyond those limits, the law enforcers will take action," Mr Samak said.


Mr Sondhi expected 300,000 PAD supporters to turn up today but police estimated the rally would draw only tens of thousands.


The PAD's strategy is to paralyse the administration and the country. It includes the seizure of Government House and all ministries along Ratchadamnoen avenue , disrupting two airports in Phuket and Hat Yai, and blocking roads, according to Mr Sondhi.


"Today's protest is an extraordinary one. We will do everything possible to make sure the state mechanisms stop working. But we will not do anything to cause trouble to the people," Mr Sondhi said.


A unit of about 100 Arintharat commandos have now been sent in to secure Government House.


Mr Samak called the PAD's actions unreasonable and said they could hurt the country's economy.


"People have started to panic. This is too much. But I will try my utmost to be patient," he said.


He confirmed that the cabinet meeting would proceed as usual today despite the rallies and denied suggestions the government would resort to violent means to break up the rallies.


Jatuporn Promphan, a People Power party MP, ridiculed the PAD's claimed final campaign, saying it was simply an attempt to make an early exit from their activities.


Metropolitan police chief Pol LtGen Aswin Kwanmuang said police would not block protesters' movements and would help manage traffic flow.


"Police units will be in place to facilitate movement, not to break up the rally," Pol Lt-Gen Aswin said.


Police spokesman Pol Maj-Gen Surapol Thuanthong said the national police chief has told officers to be patient in the face of the demonstrations.


Special Branch police chief Pol LtGen Thiradet Rodphothong said people from Chon Buri would form the largest number of demonstrators in Bangkok.


The protest would be joined by 2,000 to 3,000 staff of the Provincial Electricity Authority, according to Phien Yongnoo, chairman of the labour union of the Metropolitan Electricity Authority.


But Sirichai Mai-ngam, chairman of the labour union of the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand, said the PAD leaders have not yet approached them to join today's protest.


"We will wait to see the situation before making any move," he said.


Earlier report:


(By BangkokPost.com)


Tens of thousands of demonstrators assembled on Monday for "one last protest march" to block highways, Bangkok streets and access to Government House to try to force Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej and his government out of office.


Supporters of the People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD) have vowed to block major roads leading to Bangkok while PAD demonstrators in Bangkok plan to lay siege to Government House.


The demonstration may focus on Government House, in attempt to force a confrontation when Mr Samak and ministers hold their weekly cabinet meeting.


Retired Maj-Gen Chamlong Srimuang, core leader of the PAD, called on anti-government demonstrators from everywhere to gather at Makkawan Bridge at 7am on Tuesday to begin moving to Phitsanuloke Road "to lay siege at Government House". The bridge has been the street headquarters of a 24/7 PAD protest since May 25.


Mr Samak, in a strongly worded statement broadcast live on NBTV from Government House, called for the public to exercise discretion and pledged security forces would try to prevent violence.


Mr Samak said:

"The movement tomorrow should be abide by the laws.... If it goes beyond the boundaries of the law, police will handle it.


"This government comes from legal elections. If someone want to overthrow the government, they should ask parliament.


"About cases in the court process: If I have to quit, I will quit.... I am confident whatever happens, I can accept it. Whatever happens, it will not affect this country."


The prime minister asked the PAD not to resort to violence, saying that the government will itself exercise restraint and try its best to maintain law and order. He vowed to take legal action if the PAD goes beyond the limits of the law.


He also vowed that "a cabinet meeting will be held as usual tomorrow" (Tuesday).


He pleaded for public "help to take care of the country," and asked them not tosupport a group of people who have been campaigning for the overthrow of the government.


PAD members from Bangkok and the 14 southern provinces began to assemble at a gateway to the South on Monday afternoon.


PAD leader Sondhi Limthongkul, said, via satellite-based ASTV:

''I'm making one last call for people in the North to come down and the South to come up. We'd like to ask people in every sector to come out.


''We ask you to trust us, the PAD core members.''


Protesters said they will seek to block main roads from the North, Northeast, eastern provinces and the South. If there is any resistance or clashes, "reinforcements" will join the battle.


Politicians from all sides rallied around the government.


Abhisit Vejjajiva, the opposition and Democrat party leader, said he believed Mr Samak would not resign and he did not see why the prime minister would yield to the PADâ??s demands.


"The government has not done anything wrong or malign to the country," he said.


Deputy Prime Minister Sanan Kachornprasart said the government believes the PAD will not go beyond limits and bring the countryâ??s administration or economy to a halt by laying siege to Government House or blocking roads in all regions.


Maj-Gen Sanan warned the PAD to be careful, saying certain elements could stage an untoward incidents to incite unrest and a coup.


The prime minister said he is ready to accept the outcome of all legal cases against him and vowed not to cause any damage to the country, adding that he is ready to leave his post through the right channels, not by pressure from any group.


In his statement Mr Samak also strongly criticised the media for having too pessimistic an attitude against him.


Late Monday afternoon, PAD supporters had arrived at Makkhawan Rangsan bridge from the provinces to prepare for the Tuesday rally.


Pol Lt-Gen Aswin Kwanmuang, commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, said police will be deployed to provide security, maintain law and order and facilitate traffic flow. The police will not obstruct the PAD march, which is expected to be peaceful he said.


Supachai Jaisamut, the Interior Ministry spokesman, said the ministry has coordinated with the Royal Thai Police Office and other security agencies to ensure law and order. Authorities concerned will not obstruct the PAD march, he said.

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Bangkok Post

26 Aug 2008


Protesters seize NBT



Supporters of People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD) closed the National Broadcasting Service of Thailand (NBT), a government-run television station, on Tuesday morning, forcing it off the air to demand that Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej and his cabinet be removed.


They reportedly entered the back entrance of the station and forced all the employees out of the building.


The station briefly showed pictures of protesters breaking down the station doors before it blacked out.


[color:red]Police later arrested a group of 80 protesters, who were reportedly armed with two pistols, knives, and golf clubs.


But PAD core leader Sondhi Limthongkul denied that the men were carrying weapons, saying that the protest was done peacefully.


Other groups of protesters, meanwhile, invaded the compound of the Transport Ministry and the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives. They did not enter the government buildings.


Another group of PAD supporters blocked roads around the Government House, forcing the government to cancel the weekly meeting Tuesday.


Local media reported that Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej called an urgent meeting with Supreme Commander Boonsang Niampradit and chiefs of armed forces at Army Headquarters after the weekly cabinet meeting was cancelled.



(p.s. Some schools and universities have closed until the situation clears.)



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Fair play to the PAD!!!!!!!!


Down with Thaksin/Samak and their cronies.


I mean, come on, look at the farking crooks and murdering gangsters in the current puppet government!


I've been to one of these PAD rallies, and these people are no thugs.


PAD Chaiyo! Chaiyo! Chaiyo!

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They do seem to be regular folks who believe in what they are doing. No pay for "protesting" involved either.


Omagawd ... I'm on the same side of the barricades as Fidel. :shocked:


Meanwhile, Mr Genius speaks on Burma:



Bangkok Post

26 Aug 2008


Suu Kyi 'tool of the West'



Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej yesterday criticised Western nations for pinning their hopes of bringing democracy to Burma on the release of detained opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi. Samak met the United Nations' top envoy to Burma Ibrahim Gambari yesterday and told the diplomat that efforts to engage the military regime would be more productive if the Nobel peace prize winner was left off the agenda.


"Europe uses Aung San Suu Kyi as a tool, [but] you can have deeper discussions with Burma," he told reporters.


[color:red]"The [international community] should talk about how to bring democracy to Burma and focus on the constitution and the elections," he added.[/color]




Samak said he would relay that message when he attends the UN General Assembly next month and Thailand would be ready to help as chairman of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean).


The UN envoy also met Foreign Minister Tej Bunnag yesterday.


[color:red]Mr Gambari left Burma on Saturday after failing to secure a meeting with Mrs Suu Kyi, who has been under house arrest for most of the last 19 years.


Her National League for Democracy (NLD) party has branded the UN visit a 'waste of time'.


[color:red]Suu Kyi led the NLD to a landslide election victory in 1990, but was never allowed to govern.[/color]




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