BANGKOK

  • Protesting Thai students boycott royal graduation day
    BANGKOK, October 30 (Reuters): Some students sympathetic to Thai protesters boycotted graduation ceremonies led by King Maha Vajiralongkorn on Friday in a show of anger at the monarchy amid growing calls to reform it. The ceremonies, at which the monarch personally hands out degrees, are a rite of passage for graduates and their families with photographs of the moment displayed with pride in many Thai homes. But protests since mid-July have brought open criticism of the mona
  • Thai protesters target royal spending at Bangkok rally
    BANGKOK, October 29 (Reuters): Thai protesters criticised spending by King Maha Vajiralongkorn's palace and held a "fashion show" that parodied members of the royal family at a rally in Bangkok on Thursday that drew thousands of people. What began as anti-government demonstrations in July have increasingly called for reforms of the monarchy, breaking a longstanding taboo and defying a law that sets a jail term of up to 15 years for criticising the king and his fam
  • A Picture and Its Story: 'Danger was coming' - lone protester who defied Thai police
    BANGKOK, October 27 (Reuters): Head down, arms spread, one man pushes with all his strength against rows of Thai riot police behind their shields. The Reuters image of the night of Oct. 16, when police tried to use force to disperse protesters, has become one of the most widely published of months of demonstrations to call for the ousting of the government and reforms to the powerful monarchy. For the man in the picture, Anurak Jeantawanich, 52, it was the moment when he tri
  • Yellow-shirted Thai royalists show support for king
    BANGKOK, October 27 (Reuters): More than 1,000 yellow-shirted Thai royalists demonstrated in support of King Maha Vajiralongkorn on Tuesday, close to where thousands of people marched a day earlier to demand reforms of the monarchy. Youth and student-led protests began in Thailand in July to call for the resignation of Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha - a former army ruler - and a new constitution, but have increasingly sought curbs on the monarchy's powers. "We wan
  • Thai protesters say they will petition Germany over king
    BANGKOK, October 25 (Reuters): Thai demonstrators said on Sunday they would petition Germany to investigate King Maha Vajiralongkorn's use of his powers while he has been staying in the European country, as thousands of people again took to the streets of Bangkok. Sunday's demonstration was the first major show of force since Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha ignored an overnight deadline from protesters to resign and since he withdrew Oct. 15 emergency measures that had
  • Protesters return to Bangkok streets to pressure PM
    BANGKOK, October 25 (Reuters): Thousands of people protested in the centre of Thailand's capital Bangkok on Sunday in the first demonstration since Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha ignored their Saturday night deadline to resign. It was also the first major show of force since Prayuth lifted Oct. 15 emergency measures that had been meant to stop three months of protests against the government and monarchy, but which brought tens of thousands of people onto the streets. &
  • Thais defy protest ban for sixth day with 'Hunger Games' salutes
    BANGKOK, October 20 (Reuters): Thai protesters raised three-finger salutes to the national anthem at public places across Bangkok on Tuesday in a sixth day showing defiance of a ban meant to end three months of protests against the government and monarchy. Protests have only grown despite a crackdown in which dozens have been detained. Two protest leaders were arrested on Tuesday on new charges just as soon as they were granted bail on previous charges. "This is not a l
  • Defiant protesters take over Bangkok streets, PM seeks talks
    BANGKOK, October 18 (Reuters): Thousands of anti-government protesters took over key intersections in Bangkok on Sunday, defying a ban on protests for the fourth day with chants of "down with dictatorship" and "reform the monarchy." Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, a former junta leader the protesters seek to oust, is concerned about the spreading protests and the government wants to talk, his spokesman said. Demonstrations have persisted despite the arr
  • Thai protesters take to streets in new show of defiance
    BANGKOK, October 18 (Reuters): Hundreds of Thai anti-government protesters demonstrated in Bangkok on Sunday, again defying a ban on protests against Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha and the powerful monarchy. Demonstrations have persisted despite the arrest of dozens of protesters and their leaders, the use of water cannon and shutdowns on much of Bangkok's metro rail system in a bid to quell over three months of street action. Protesters moved quickly from point to poi
  • Tens of thousands protest across Thailand in defiance of ban
    BANGKOK, October 18 (Reuters): Tens of thousands of people took to the streets in a wave of protests across Bangkok and other Thai cities on Saturday in defiance of a government crackdown following three months of demonstrations aimed at the prime minister and monarchy. Many protesters said they had been stirred into action by the police's use of water cannon on Friday to disperse thousands of youth-led protesters who included many children. "It was way over the lin
  • Thai protesters defy ban for second day despite PM's warning
    BANGKOK, October 16 (Reuters) - Hundreds of Thai anti-government protesters chanted "Down with Dictatorship" under pouring rain in Bangkok on Friday, defying a government ban on demonstrations for a second day and in spite of a warning from Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha. The location of the demonstration was shifted at short notice by about 1.6 km (1 mile) after police deployed in force at the Ratchaprasong Intersection, where tens of thousands of protesters rallie
  • Thousands defy Thai protest ban to join Bangkok demonstration
    BANGKOK, October 15 (Reuters) - Thousands of Thai protesters demonstrated in Bangkok on Thursday, defying a ban imposed to end three months of anti-government action that has targeted King Maha Vajiralongkorn as well as Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, a former junta leader. Despite police appeals over a loudspeaker to disperse, the group spilled across the Ratchaprasong Intersection in one of Bangkok's busiest commercial districts. It was the scene of bloodshed in 2010, during
  • Rival groups face off on Bangkok streets as big protests persist
    BANGKOK, October 14 (Reuters) - At least 10,000 Thai protesters marched to the prime minister's office on Wednesday demanding he stepped down, while thousands of royalist supporters also turned out in their biggest showing since anti-government demonstrations began three months ago. The two camps gathered face-to-face at Bangkok's Democracy Monument, which has become a focal point for the protests. They kept apart barring some brief scuffles, but the standoff was an uncom
  • Biggest Thai protest in years targets government and monarchy
    BANGKOK, September 19  (Reuters): Around 20,000 people protested in Thailand's capital on Saturday against the government of former coup leader and Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, with many demonstrators also calling for reforms to the monarchy. "Down with feudalism, long live the people," was one of the chants at the biggest demonstration in Bangkok since Prayuth took power in a 2014 coup. Protests have been building in the southeast Asian country since
  • Hundreds of Thai students rally to demand school reform
    BANGKOK, September 5 (Reuters): Hundreds of high school students demonstrated in Bangkok on Saturday to demand reform of an education system they say is outdated in the latest of more than a month of anti-authority protests. Protests that began on Thai university campuses have taken place almost daily since mid-July in an increasing challenge to the government in the Southeast Asian country with some protesters also demanding change to the powerful monarchy. Over 600 student
  • Coronavirus forces tourism rethink in world's most visited city
    BANGKOK, August 20 (Thomson Reuters Foundation): Bangkok tourist destination Khao San Road is usually heaving with people on weekends, its cheap beer bars, tattoo parlours, street vendors, hostels and buzzing nightlife drawing budget travellers and tour group alike. On a recent Saturday evening, the street was deserted except for a few dozen locals who wandered past boarded up shops, ignoring restaurant staff calling out meal and drink deals. Khao San Road clearly shows the
  • Testing royal taboos: inside Thailand's new youth protests
    BANGKOK, August 10 (Reuters): Over two days of video calls earlier this month, about a dozen students from Thailand’s Kasetsart and Mahanakorn universities debated whether to break a taboo that could land them in jail: openly challenging the country’s powerful monarchy, according to two people on the calls. Protesters on the streets and online have made a growing number of veiled references to King Maha Vajiralongkorn over the last few months as they push for greate
  • 'Delicious taxes': Thai protesters use Japanese cartoon hamster to mock government
    BANGKOK, July 26 (Reuters): Hundreds of Thai protesters sang a Japanese cartoon jingle on Sunday with lyrics mocking the government as hungry hamsters feasting on taxpayer cash, part of a new protest movement by youth who say they are using whimsical tactics for serious ends. Thai youths have been defying a coronavirus ban on gatherings to hold rallies almost daily since last week. The first rally, by a group called the Free Youth Movement, drew more than 2,000 activists, one o
  • Young Thais call for government to resign in night protest
    BANGKOK, July 23 (Reuters): Holding up messages on their tablets and waving their cellphone torches, hundreds of young protesters rallied on Thursday to demand the Thai the government resign and dissolve parliament, defying a coronavirus ban on gatherings. A network of student groups called "Free Youth" joined forces on the outskirts of Bangkok, voicing a raft of complaints against the year-old civilian government of Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, a former army chi
  • 'Lese majeste not enforced after Thai King advised against it'
    Bangkok, June 15 (IANS): Thailand's draconian lese majeste law has never been practically enforced in the last few years because King Maha Vajiralongkorn advised against the use of it, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha said on Monday.   Prayut confirmed the authorities have not arrested and prosecuted anyone on lese majeste charges due to the mercy of the monarch who had advised to spare all people from such possible lawsuits, reports Xinhua news aency.   If fo