Authorities force cancellation of red-shirt events

Three social events organised by anti-junta groups have been forced to cancel after the authorities repeatedly intimidated the owners of the venues. 
 
The three events are a new year party in Samut Songkhram, a friendly football match in Bangkok, and a folk music concert in Bangkok. The three events, apart from being social gatherings, aimed to raise funds for political prisoners. 
 
Suwanna Tallek, a coordinator of the new year party scheduled for 17 Dec, revealed that the event was organized for red-shirt supporters in Central and Western regions to get together and celebrate the holiday season. Several famous luk thung singers were to sing at the event. Tickets cost 350 baht. She added that the organisers would contribute some of the revenue to red-shirt prisoners, especially those facing terrorism and lèse majesté charges. 
 
Suwanna told Prachatai that the authorities did not contact the event organisers but constantly intimidated the restaurant owner until the event organisers themselves decided to cancel the event for the sake of the restaurant. 
 
Although the event was already cancelled, plain-clothes police officers twice went to the restaurant on 17 Dec and took photos of the customers and license plates of vehicles parked there. 
 
On 16 Dec, Fairy Tale, a group of former lèse majesté prisoners, had to cancel its mo lam concert after the authorities intimidated the owner of the restaurant in Bangkok where the concert was to be held.  
 
Also in the past few weeks, the 24 June for Democracy Group was forced to cancel a friendly football match which was aimed at raising funds for Somyot Prueksakasemsuk, the leader of the group and lèse majesté prisoner. The group revealed that the authorities did not pressure them to cancel the event, but pressured the owner of the football field.