Security chief: Government can still handle protests


BANGKOK, Nov 29 – Lt Gen Paradorn Pattanatabut, secretary-general of the National Security Council (NSC), asked anti-government protesters to use peaceful means while saying the government can still handle the ongoing protests.

He said shifting the peaceful protests to the seizures of state buildings could risk being against the law. Lt Gen Paradorn, therefore, asked the demonstrators to help monitor the situation to prevent any third party from instigating any incidents which might lead to violence.

“The government can still handle the situation, but it’s risky as violence could occur. The government is gathering evidence to issue arrest warrants for protest leaders who led demonstrators out to seize key state buildings,” the NSC chief said.

He asserted that Government House and Parliament are restricted areas and are not permitted for protests.

Regarding recent clashes of protesters in several areas, Lt Gen Paradorn said police force have been assigned to all state buildings and facilities. He believed the situation will not escalate and that the gathering of Red Shirt supporters tomorrow at Rajamangala Stadium should not create a problem.

On a relate note, permanent-secretary of the Interior Ministry Wiboon Sanguanpong said water and electricity are still available in the capital where state buildings have been seized, while provincial halls can still provide services to the public despite being intruded by anti-government protesters.

Meanwhile, Korn Chatikavanij, a Democrat-list MP, said after leading protesters to submit a letter to the US Embassy in Bangkok that the submission was to clarify the illegitimacy of the government under Ms Yingluck Shinawatra, particularly its attempt to enforce the controversial Amnesty Bill despite the public’s opposition and its recent rejection of the Constitution Court’s jurisdiction on the composition of the Senate.

Mr Korn said he wanted the US to spread the understanding of such illegitimacy to the world and affirmed that the current sitting Democrat MPs still support the party’s nine former MPs who had resigned to lead and join the protests without any internal bickering.

However, Mr Korn denied to comment on the case that protest leader Suthep Thaugsuban had previously reprimanded him publicly on Mr Korn’s disagreement on state building’s seizures.