Over 30 military officers storm Chiang Mai University to monitor student’s meeting, students response with anti-junta fliers

After the paranoid Thai military pressured students in northern Thailand to cancel a discussion during a lunch session, students responded by distributing anti-junta leaflets in the university’s restrooms.  

Over 30 military officers came to Chiang Mai University on Tuesday afternoon to monitor an activity ‘Eating and Debating Student Activities under Martial Law’, an event organized by students from Chiang Mai University in the northern province of Chiang Mai.

The activity, which was supposed to take place at noon, was eventually cancelled due to the pressure mounted by the military presence on campus.

After the event was cancelled, students reportedly distributed anti-junta fliers in the Student Association Building’s restrooms. The fliers read, “No Coup”, “Stop intimidating students”, and “Dictator get out”.

Fliers with the message "Dictator Get Out" in a restroom of the Student Association Building of Chiang Mai University

According to the organizers of the event, the activity was meant to give students space to informally discuss and exchange ideas. However, a lot of military officers and police in and out of uniform were seen on campus before the event was supposed to be held.

The cancelled event coincided with an activity to decorate the Student Association Building of Chiang Mai University with the national and King’s flags, which was allegedly planned by the university administrators to distract students from joining the anti-junta event.

In Bangkok at around 5 pm, police in plain clothes and military officers also came to Srinakharinwirot University in central Bangkok to find students who had earlier distributed anti-junta leaflets.

On Tuesday morning, students from ‘Graft Liberty for Democracy’, a student activist group based in Srinakharinwirot University, distributed fliers to urge the junta to put an end to the imposition of martial law and stop intimidating students.

According to Matichon, one member of the group stated that six months after the coup staged by the National Council for Peace and Order on 22 May, it was proved that martial law does not solve the political problems in society where people have various different ideas. Therefore, the junta should reconsider this and lift martial law as soon as possible.

Police (in plain clothes) and military officers at Srinakharinwirot University in central Bangkok on 25 November evening (courtesy of Matichon)