WITH both anti-government and royalists holding rallies at the Democracy Monument this evening (Nov. 8) the Metropolitan Police Bureau has field 8,000 men to handle the situation while having erected a concrete barrier at Makkhawan Rangsan bridge in front of the Education Ministry, INN News reported this afternoon.
Deputy Metropolitan Police Chief Pol. Maj. Gen Piya Tawichai said the crowd control unit has been deployed in three areas, with the first team being around the Democracy Monument and surrounding areas.
The second team is stationed around Sanam Luang ground and nearby areas while the third team is stationed from Phan Fah bridge till Government House.
Last police barrier on this side is 50 metres before Government House at Mekkawan Rangsan bridge while on Sanam Luang side the last barrier is at Mahathat road.
Meanwhile it was reported that a cement barrier strengthened with a metal fence and barbed wire had been put up around Mekkawan Rangsan bridge in front of the Education Ministry in order to prevent protesters from getting close to Dusit Palace and the Equestrian Statue of King Rama V.
While Ratchadamnoen Nok road was still open to traffic this afternoon, some yellow-shirt people had gathered on the footpath near the Equestrian Statue of King Rama V to wait for the evening’s rally.
Maj. Gen. Piya added that it is uncertain whether water cannons will be used against the demonstrators with decision to be based on assessment of the situation. While the severe emergency decree is no longer in force, the Public Assembly Act does authorise police officers to take action according to the law, which police do uphold.
Meanwhile Pol. Col. Krisana Pattanacharoen, deputy spokesman of the Royal Thai Police, said so far only the royalist Centre for People Protecting the Monarchy had requested permission to organize activities today.
The cement barrier erected near the Education Ministry. Photos: INN News