Thai protesters’ plaque removed from near palace: Police

Asia World

BANGKOK: A plaque placed by Thai pro-democracy protesters near the Grand Palace in Bangkok which declared that Thailand belongs to the people and not the king has been removed, police said on Monday (Sep 21).

The plaque was placed on Sunday after a weekend rally by tens of thousands of people who cheered calls for reforms to the monarchy of King Maha Vajiralongkorn.

“I’ve received a report that the plaque is gone but I don’t know how and I don’t know who did it,” Bangkok’s deputy police chief Piya Tawichai told Reuters.

“Police are checking with the BMA (Bangkok Metropolitan Administration) and checking who took it out as the plaque is part of the evidence to charge the protest group (for this wrongdoing),” Piya said.

A plaque declaring "This country belongs to the people" is pictured during a mass rally t
The plaque is pictured during a mass rally to call for the ouster of Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and reforms in the monarchy, near the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, Sep 20, 2020. (Photo: REUTERS/Jorge Silva)

After the protest, people queued up to take pictures next to the plaque, which also features a hand giving the three-finger salute adopted by pro-democracy protesters.

Protesters have grown ever bolder during two months of demonstrations against Thailand’s palace and military-dominated establishment, breaking a longstanding taboo on criticising the monarchy – which is illegal under lese majeste laws.

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