22 May 2015

Bangkok: students protest against military rule

Students stage protests against the Thai authorities, a year after the army seized power from an elected government.

Video: Channel 4 News Bangkok cameraman Raul Gallego Abellan shot and edited these scenes today

The military has quashed public demonstrations and any sign of resistance to the 22 May 2014 coup in Thailand, which it says it was forced to undertake to end violence between rival factions.

The military government has promised a general election next year but critics worry about a new constitution they say is undemocratic.

Activists staged small shows of defiance to mark the anniversary of the takeover. Police detained around 30 young people outside the Bangkok arts and cultural centre, a Reuters witness said.

The group had gathered and locked hands in front of the centre, which was the location of small daily protests in the days following the coup.

Thailand has been mired for a decade in rivalry between the Bangkok-based establishment and ousted premier Thasksin Shinawatra, a former telecommunications tycoon whose policies won him the support of the poor but the hostility of the elite.

The government ousted last year was led by Thaksin’s sister, the country’s first woman prime minister, Yingluck Shinawatra.