5-speed listening (Thailand - Level 5)

Thai protests continue despite state of emergency






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Protests are taking place in Thailand's capital Bangkok, despite a state of emergency. Police arrested dozens of pro-democracy demonstrators. They have been protesting in cities and online for over three months. Many of the protestors are students, but they are being joined by a wider variety of people. They are calling for a new constitution and a true constitutional monarch and a more democratic system. They are also demanding the dissolution of parliament, the resignation of the Prime Minister, and an end to "the intimidation of government critics".

The government said the protests have, "affected the government's stability, safety, property and staff". It said they were, "no longer a peaceful assembly," and were a threat to national security. The government banned gatherings of more than five people. It also banned online messages that could "harm national security". Police arrested 22 people for public disorder offences, including three prominent activists. Footage showing a woman being put into a police car went viral on social media. Police photographed crowds and warned demonstrators they could be prosecuted.

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