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4259095e

Some Hong Kong protestors have rallied in support of Thai protesters.

The pro-democracy movement in Thailand is calling for reforms to the monarchy and against the government of Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-Ocha.

The pro-democracy movement in Thailand is calling for reforms to the monarchy and against the government of Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-Ocha.Thailand’s student-led protests began in February 2020 after the Constitutional Court dissolved the Future Forward Party—an opposition party popular among young people—and banned its leaders from politics for 10 years. Rallies paused due to the coronavirus pandemic, but resumed in July after a prominent pro-democracy activist went missing.

Pro-democracy protesters in Thailand have three demands: resignation of Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-Ocha, changes to a constitution drafted under military rule and reforms to the constitutional monarchy. Students have submitted more demands to the government, including one asking for a separation of the King’s assets and the Crown Property Bureau, but they also want to cut the Palace’s share in the national budget, to ban the King from expressing his political views, and for there to be safeguards to prevent him from endorsing future coups.

In order to tackle the growing student protests, Thailand’s government—which is led by the former army chief Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-Ocha—declared a state of emergency on October 15, banning public gatherings and censoring the media. The state of emergency was lifted on October 22 to reduce political tensions.

However, the protesters believed that the emergency decree was another attempt by the government to take away their rights. Following the decree, Hong Kong students pledged support for the pro-democracy movement in Thailand. From helmets and gas masks to flashmobs and hand signals, Thailand’s student-led movement has been modeled on the Hong Kong movement in its own fight for change.

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