DEMONSTRATORS joining another “Walk to Chase Tu” protest march from Din Daeng intersection to the residence Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, whose nickname is Tu, at First Infantry Regiment barracks barely a kilometre away this evening (June 12) set off a string of giant firecrackers but there was no clash with police teams finally retreating while the protesters too started dispersing, Matichon newspaper said.
Reporters said that at 6. 20 p.m. demonstrators from 14 activist groups had gathered at this intersection and waved flags and gave the three-finger salute.
As the protesters started to move the police too strengthened their positions.
The situation remained calm till 7.40 p.m. at which point a representative of demonstrators used a megaphone to tell police not to use heavy tactics like yesterday while also urging their superiors to rein them in.
Later at around 8.13 p.m. one of the demonstrators set off a firecracker to the cheers of the whole group with this followed by firing four more.
On the other hand the police teams at this spot were told via radio to stay still for now and that they will be moving in on the protesters later.
At 8.15 p.m. the protesters set off firecrackers more frequently and the police teams were ordered to pick up their rubber bullet weapons and stand in formation behind their shields.
The police issued an announcement warning people on both sides of the road to be careful.
At 8. 39 p.m. police ordered reporters to keep a distance of 10 metres from the protest line as they had to take action because there were people committing illegal acts.
The media moved to Soi Klao Siam Condo but later complained after police set off a blue laser as they feared their cameras would get damaged.
At 8.45 p.m. Police ordered all reporters to sit down.
At 8.47 p.m. some protesters led by Mrs. Worawan Sae-Ang, or Aunt Pao, marched close to the police line.
At 9 p.m. police teams closed the road from Din Daeng to Victory Monument leaving only one traffic lane open.
At 9. 04 p.m. police retreated towards the Victory Monument before declaring that they were there to maintain peace and order but the protesters booed at them.
Police then announced that they would not use weapons against the people and would only do so if the protesters flung weaponary objects or fired firecrackers at them in which case they would have to protect themselves.
At 9.19 p.m. police withdrew from the area by getting in their vehicles and driving off amid cheers from the protesters.
At 9. 21 p.m. Firecrackers were set off again, sending people and the media running back to Din Daeng intersection.
At 9. 28 p.m. Most of the policemen had moved away with only a few units left behind while some of the protesters started to disperse.
Scenes from this evening protest march at Din Daeng intersection. Photos: Matichon