Bangkok Shutdown!

Tens of thousands of protesters who filled the major intersections of Bangkok, the capital of Thailand today to put pressure on Thailand’s Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and replace her with a transitional government, calling the operation “Bangkok Shutdown.”

Major intersections that normally teem with cars and trucks were blockaded, but trains and river ferries were operating, most shops were open and motorbikes plied the roads freely.

The protest led by former lawmaker Suthep Thaugsuban aims to ‘shutdown’ Bangkok for several days or until Yingluck is removed from power. “Don’t ask me how long this occupation will last,” protest leader Suthep Thaugsuban said in a speech to supporters carried by the movement’s BlueSky television channel. “We will not stop until we win.”

Police and soldiers maintained a low profile as the “Shutdown Bangkok” drive got under way in the city of about 12 million people. The mood was festive, with many protesters singing and dancing in the streets.

Despite the planned shutdown, Bangkok was not entirely paralyzed.

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Even the nonagenarian joined the protest.

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“Bangkok Shutdown” shirts were selling very well at the rally site.

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Business sure very good for those street sellers today!

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Protesters in front of Central World.

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Thousands of people have occupied various busy parts of Bangkok, complete with tents and sleeping mats. It’s not really a shutdown, though. Bangkok more or less functioned as normal Monday with the exception of a number of mall closures.
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Thousands upon thousands of people, but at least so far it is a very festive atmosphere. A giant street party where people are singing, blowing whistles, clapping, eating, sleeping, smiling, holding up signs and just basically having fun.
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Roads that affected:

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I managed to record few videos:-

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=611980332172843&set=vb.413231322047746&type=2&theater

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=611978598839683&set=vb.413231322047746&type=2&theater

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=611977485506461&set=vb.413231322047746&type=2&theater

Finally, all i want to say is KEEP CALM for those who are travelling to Bangkok during this operation of ‘Bangkok Shutdown’. My advise is stay away from the protest sites, despite the peaceful atmosphere that prevails at most daytime rallies, because Even demonstrations that are meant to be peaceful can turn confrontational, and escalate into violence without warning. However, it’s not as scary as the news reported in the newspaper. As a tourist, the biggest issue facing is mobility, as protesters have closed off seven major Bangkok intersections. All hotels and shopping malls remained open, though opening hours of shopping complexes and restaurants near protest sites were closed as early as 5pm today!

Just in case, tourists can seek assistance by calling the following hotlines:-

Tourism Authority of Thailand: 1672

Thai Tourist Police: 1155

Suvarnabhumi Airport Operation Center: +66 (0)2 134 4077

Don Mueang Airport Operation Center +66 (0)2 535 3431

Tourist Assistance Center (temporary): +66 (0)2 401 1111

Alternatively, visitors can email Touristcenter13@gmail.com or TSC@mots.go.th.

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