SOME activists in Chiang Mai gathered at Tha Phae Gate this evening (Aug. 5) and set fire to their red shirts that symbolise their struggle and support of Pheu Thai Party after this party tore up an eight-party MOU signed with Move Forward and other partners to now forging a new coalition government with military-installed parties that aim to cling on to power, Matichon newspaper said,
These activists were also going to hold a ritual cursing ceremony in accordance with the belief of the Lanna people.
An hour earlier around 10 activists of the “We the People” group held their “Stand against Tyranny” event at Tha Phae Gate for the 59th week . They held up placards with various messages including “Free our friends, stand to stop imprisonment” and “Repeal Section 112” while also giving the three-finger salute.
Motorists passing by honked in support of their demonstration with some sliding down their window and likewise giving a three-finger salute.
Mr. Sudchai Thammakul, 85, a former red-shirt follower in this northern city, said a group of angry red-shirt people arranged to meet and burn red shirts and perform the ritual ceremony to curse senators and Pheu Thai Party for allegedly lying and fooling to the people who they think are stupid by not staying together with the pro-democracy camp and instead now holding hands with parties at the other end of the spectrum.
He added that he had fought for the red shirts since 2009 when demonstrations and unrest against the Abhisit Vejjajiva government took place followed by a military crackdown. Whenever the group mobilised people to go to Bangkok to demonstrate he always went along.
At that time he loved and respected Pheu Thai de facto leader/former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra for all that he had done for the people but now felt betrayed with Pheu Thai’s latest move being a betrayal and had angered the red shirts.
Ms. Thip (surname withheld), 22, a Chiang Mai University student, said she was very disappointed with Pheu Thai Party which she had always supported and had hoped would form a coalition government with Move Forward Party.
Chiang Mai activists angry at Pheu Thai Party linking up with military-installed parties burn their red shirts. Photos: Matichon