Thailand’s Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has warned student activists not to break the law during their planned protest this Saturday, as he reassured that he has instructed the police to treat the protesters with leniency “because they are our children.”
As the day of the protest draws near, the Prime Minister reminded the protesters, and their leaders in particular, about the relevant laws and regulations and about what could be done and what should be avoided, in order to avoid conflicts.
He reiterated that the Government will not allow violence to occur during the protest, adding that the protesters should cooperate to avoid it.
“I am not intimidating anyone, but the country’s existence is based on the principle of law,” said the Prime Minister, as he asked the protesters whether they think, if the break the law, the public in general will be tolerant.
He insisted that he is not in conflict with the protesters, adding that they can stage a protest as they wish, but reminded them to take responsibility if their actions or protests cause damage to the country, which is already saddled with a myriad of problems, solutions to which require the cooperation of all sectors of society.
The Prime Minister said that he has remained very patient and has been trying to solve all the problems in an appropriate way, so that the country can move forward.
“You have the right to protest. What about the rights of other people? What about Government premises? There are rules and laws in every country. People gain or lose from any act, like the English saying ‘You reap what you sow’. You do not suffer, but the country and other people suffer. So when you claim you are a patriot, and want to solve the country’s problems, you must start by correcting yourselves. If you start by provoking conflict, it will go nowhere,” said the Prime Minister.
He pleaded with the protesters, as well as other opponents of the Government, to be fair to his administration, insisting that it has not been a complete failure, as they allege, but has made achievements in several areas.
Thailand, he said, will lose out and lose opportunities in the world community if people in the country are obsessed with quarreling and fighting with one another.
Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service (Thai PBS)