Hundreds turn up for UDD rally in East Pattaya

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Leaders of the “red shirt” anti-government movement blamed Thailand’s ruling party for inflation and continued to say that a military coup was imminent to hundreds of faithful that turned out for an East Pattaya rally April 23.

The United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship claimed 10,000 people turned out on Soi Khao Talo to hear from national leaders and self-exiled headman Thaksin Shinawatra.

Jatuporn Promphan, MP for the red-shirt political party Puea Thai, urged the crowd to vote for party candidates in the upcoming general election.

UDD enthusiasts listen to a call in from self-exiled leader Thaksin Shinawatra. UDD enthusiasts listen to a call in from self-exiled leader Thaksin Shinawatra.

Kwanchai Praipana – who goes by the self-styled nickname of “Issan Rambo” – blasted Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva for dispatching the army to use force in dispersing the reds from their Bangkok protest sites a year ago.

Jatuporn later claimed that the violent breakup of the protests, which left 91 people dead, has caused an increase in commodity prices and inflation.

The Puea Thai MP told followers he believed the party would secure 300 parliamentary seats in the next election.

Northeast Thailand red shirt leaders then claimed the army initiated an armed border conflict with Cambodia over the Ta Muen and Ta Kwai temples in Surin to mask their plans for a military coup.

The rally continued with the reading of a message from Arisman Pongruangrong, who condemned the April 21 shootings of one of his aides and another rally organizer and demanded police find the shooter.

Events reached their finale with a phone-in from Thaksin, believed to be hiding out in Dubai. He pledged that if Puea Thai was elected as the ruling party, he’d have leaders reduce the public debt, increase spending and wages, rehabilitate young criminals and provide air conditioning and computers for them.