Bangkok: Stern warnings from Thailand`s military junta to stop criticising the coup have not deterred protesters, who have been gathering and staring down soldiers in defiance of martial law.
The numbers have been relatively small: Several hundred people gathered yesterday at Victory Monument and eventually dispersed on their own, vowing to return the next day.
"Freedom is more important, isn`t it?" said Khao Thitipong. "If we don`t have freedom, we don`t have life." Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha, the nation`s new military ruler, warned coup opponents yesterday not to protest, saying the nation could revert to the "old days" of turmoil and street violence if they did.
"Right now there are people coming out to protest. So do you want to go back to the old days?" Prayuth said in his first public appearance since the coup. "I`m asking the people in the country, if you want it that way, then I will have to enforce the law."
Yesterday`s protest was tense but nonviolent, as others have been since last week, when the army first declared martial law and then announced it was taking over the government.