Thailand announces emergency decree to quell pro-democracy protests
Thailand's government arrested several prominent protest leaders and announced a ban on gatherings of more than five people under an emergency decree aimed at quelling pro-democracy demonstrations that have gripped the country for more than three months.
Thailand's Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has warned that the entire country could be "consumed by flames" if pro-democracy protests continue to take place. Since July, protesters have been on the streets demanding changes to the Constitution and free and fair elections. This despite legal action and arrests from the government. Protesters say they will hold a major protest next month if their demands are not met. DW asks Thailand's education minister, Nataphol Teepsuwan, what the government intends to do. Pro-democracy protestors in Thailand are threatening to defy a ban on gatherings and stage new demonstrations today. Police are setting up checkpoints in the capital Bangkok to prevent demonstrators from congregating. The government has declared a state of emergency as part of a crackdown on the demonstrators. At least 20 including three protest leaders have been arrested. The protestors are calling for a change to the constitution and an overhaul of the monarchy. For two months, students have been peacefully protesting in Thailand as they call for a change of government, new elections, and - a sensitive topic - monarchy reform.
And on Saturday, they held their largest protest to date, thanks to a new ally of a well-established pro-democracy movement.
Al Jazeera's Scott Heidler reports from Bangkok, Thailand. A turning point for Thailand? For the seventh day, Pro-democracy activists in Bangkok braving a ban on demonstrating, despite a tightening of the screws on independent media. Why are young people so determined? How does the biggest mass mobilisation since a 2014 coup differ from the past?