Photos by aurantiaco, Sorawut Wongsaranon, Yiamyut Sutthichaya, Anna Lawattanatrakul, and Kotcharak Kaewsurach
Prachatai tells the story of the pro-democracy protests between 14 – 21 October 2020 in 23 pictures, taken by our field reporters during the week-long series of demonstrations at various locations in Bangkok.
The protesters are making three demands: (1) Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha must resign, (2) parliament must open an extraordinary session to consider the draft constitutional amendments, and (3) monarchy reform.
14 October 2020, around 13.30: protesters wave a flag with the symbol of the student activist group Free Youth at the Democracy Monument after protesters moved away the plants around the monument.
14 October 2020, 09.20: Anon Nampa invites passers-by to join the protest and asks police officers not to use violence against the protesters, while the growing crowd starts to move onto the street in front of McDonald’s.
Protesters at the 14 October protest intervene in a fight between a protester and a bystander. One of the protesters is still holding an ice cream.
14 October 2020, around 14.00: Protesters holding the rainbow Pride flag, a symbol of the LGBTQ community, during the march to the Government House.
14 October 2020, 15.30: A unit of crowd control police officers form a barrier at the Tewakam intersection. The officers block off the street with buses and form a line behind metal fences.
14 October 2563, protesters holding roses while the march stops at the Tewakam intersection and is not able to continue on to the Nang Loeng intersection.
15 October 2020, 20.30: Protesters gather at the Ratchaprasong intersection to demand the release of 22 protesters arrested during the police crackdown on the protest at the Government House that morning. As the area grows darker, the crowd turns on the flashlights on their phones.
15 October 2020: Protesters gather at the Ratchaprasong intersection following the crackdown on the protest at Government House in the early morning.
Police officers in full riot gear lining up in anticipation of protesters at the Ratchaprasong intersection on 16 October 2020. The protest is later moved to the Pathumwan intersection.
A small stuffed panda is left on the street under the Siam BTS Station in a pool of water from the water cannon, which also hit many protesters.
17 October 2020: A sign is taped to the barrier at Asok BTS Station after the Centre for Resolution of Emergency Situation orders the BTS to close to prevent people from joining the protests. The sign says “Why are you closed? I can’t go home.”
17 October 2020, 16.17: Protesters in front of the Samyan Mitrtown mall hold up the three-finger salute while shouting “slave of the dictator!” at a police officer who comes to tell them to end the protest. The officer eventually leaves the area.
17 October 2020: A truck driver passing the Bangna-Trad Road honks his horn and holds up the three-finger salute in support of the protesters gathering at the Bangna intersection.
17 October 2020: Protesters gathered at the Bangna and Udomsuk intersections despite the BTS being closed.
18 October 2020, 17.30: Protesters fill the south side of the Victory Monument roundabout in a light rain, communicating with each other through hand signals.
18 October 2020: Protesters occupy Asok Montri Road, blocking the Asok intersection on the fourth consecutive day of demonstrations since the crackdown on the Government House protest in the morning of 15 October 2020.
21 October 2020: A bus driver flashes the three-finger salute at the protesters at the Victory Monument as he drives by.
21 October 2020, 17.40: A student flashes the three-finger salute, a symbol of resistance in Thailand, while standing on an overpass near Soi Rang Nam as protesters begin to march from the Victory Monument towards the Phaya Thai intersection on their way to Government House.
21 October 2020, 17.57: The volunteer protest guards link arms as they lead the protesters during their march to Government House. All of them wear helmets and many have gas masks prepared.
21 October 2020: Students hand out helmets to protesters at the Victory Monument protest. Protection gear becomes a necessity in protests after the police crackdown on the night of 16 October 2020.
21 October 2020: Holding a sign saying “Violators of the monarchy do not pass”, Nitithorn Lamluea, advisor to the royalist Student and People Network for Thailand's Reform (STR), and other members of the group, block the pro-democracy protesters as they march to the Government House. One of the demands of the pro-democracy movement is monarchy reform.
21 October 2020, 18.54: Protesters turn on the flashlights on their phones while stopping on Phetchaburi Road during their march to Government House.
21 October 2020: As a minor clash occurs at the Phaya Thai intersection, hawkers selling drinks and pickled fruits who have been following the march continue their business.