Pro-government protesters rally in Thailand’s second city

Protesters at Three King’s Square in Chiang Mai Monday. Pic: AP.

By Mark Inkey

Supporters of the Thai government gathered in the northern city of Chiang Mai on January 13 in opposition to the anti-government protesters in Bangkok who are trying to topple the government by bringing the city to a halt.

Chiang Mai the home province of the exiled former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra and the present PM, his sister, Yingluck Shinawatra, who many regard as his proxy. The government and Thaksin are very popular in Chiang Mai and many see the protests in Bangkok as undemocratic and worry that they will precipitate a military coup.

Protesters, known as Red Shirts, marched to the square of the Three Kings Monument, an iconic monument to the people of Chiang Mai because it represents the three kings who came together to plan the layout of the city.

Initially there were only a few speakers and supporters at the monument but at about 3.30pm crowds of chanting banner-waving supporters, many dressed in red, descended on the square from the north and the south.[Full story]