Seminars, activities held in solidarity with civil rights walk

A group of civil rights activists has planned to march in Bangkok and Hat Yai every Sunday to show support to the embattled ‘We Walk, Walk for Friendship’ marchers, who are on their way to Khon Kaen. 
 
The People Go Network, the organisers of We Walk, has invited its followers on Facebook to join mini-rallies on Sunday at Lumphini Park, Bangkok, and  Prince of Songkla University, Hat Yai Campus, Songkhla Province. The activities aim to express support for the activists on the march from Bangkok to Khon Kaen to promote civil rights and participation in public policies and legislation.
 
The network added that they plan to host regional activities like this every Sunday until the marchers reach the destination at Khon Kaen  
 
On 27 January, the We Walk march will arrive at Nakhon Ratchasima and host a seminar on the universal healthcare scheme, one of the welfare policies that the junta is trying to abolish. There will also be an event to collect signatures against the junta’s effort to amend the National Health Security Act.
 
In a related development, the Administrative Court on 26 January began hearings on the petition filed by the People Go Network for legal protection for the We Walk march. 
 
The We Walk march kicked off at Thammasat University’s Rangsit campus on 20 January with four main issues: the right to universal health care, the rights of farmers, community and environmental rights, and the Constitution. 
 
Since the beginning, the rally has faced repeated obstruction by the police and military. On the first day, the authorities blocked the activists from exiting Thammasat University, claiming the march violated the junta’s ban on public gatherings of five people or more. The protesters then divided into groups of four people and marched from the university group by group.
 
A day later, Ayutthaya police officers searched their supply trucks and briefly detained four protesters for interrogation. The protesters had to start the march earlier than planned after the authorities pressured an Ayutthaya temple which sheltered them. The organisers of the civil rights march are also facing prosecution for violating the junta’s ban on public assembly.
 
 
 
Some of the protesters (Photo from People GO network)
 

 

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