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Salang to besiege PAD protesters
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    Salang to besiege PAD protesters

    Salang to besiege PAD protesters


    Former deputy national police chief General Salang Bunnag Wednesday vowed to besiege the Government House to starve the protesters inside.

    Salang said Wednesday that he would lead government's supporters to besiege the Government House after a merit making ceremony in Chiang Mai.

    Salang said he will not disclose the exact date and time for besieging the PAD supporters inside the Government House. He said the PAD supporters would be blocked from foods and water supplies for at least three days.

    The Nation

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    Re: Salang to besiege PAD protesters

    A House divided

    By Surasak Glahan and Wassana Nanuam

    The People's Alliance for Democracy's decision to stand their ground at Government House raises the risk of a confrontation with pro-government supporters led by former deputy police chief Pol Gen Salang Bunnag.

    Pol Gen Salang has threatened to enlist former police officers to use force to take back the prime minister's office.

    PAD leaders on Wednesday were determined to continue occupying Government House in their efforts to oust the government led by Prime Minister Somchai Wongsawat and stop attempts to rewrite the constitution.

    "We've considered it necessary for us to continue our [demonstration] based inside Government House. We haven't reached our ultimate goal to oust this government yet," said PAD core leader Maj-Gen Chamlong Srimuang after a meeting with other PAD leaders.

    The PAD has agreed to withdraw from parts of Ratchadamnoen Nok avenue and Makkhawan Rangsan bridge, opening them up to the public, and will not re-occupy the areas.

    The PAD settled on its position one day after the Supreme Court's Criminal Division for Holders of Political Positions sentenced Thaksin to two years in jail over the Ratchadaphisek land case.

    People Power party member Chatuporn Promphan said Thaksin could decide not to appeal the case. An appeal is allowed if new evidence can be produced that could question the verdict.

    He said Thaksin might call the television political talk show Kwam Jing Wan Nee (The Truth Today) hosted by government spokesman Nattawut Saikua, political veteran Veera Musikhapong and himself at Rajamangala stadium on Nov 1.

    At the Royal Plaza, which is not far from Government House, Pol Gen Salang organised a "Save the Nation" religious ceremony. A similar merit-making event was organised in Chiang Mai.

    He announced a plan to mobilise government supporters to seal off the Government House compound where thousands of PAD supporters are camping out and cut off utilities for three days.

    "I've tried my best to avoid doing it. If asked to choose between the country and morality, I will choose the country. If I will go to hell for doing this, so be it," said the former deputy police chief.

    More than 2,000 Buddhist monks took part in blessing the country, with about 1,000 people dressed in white attending.

    Two leading members of the progovernment United Front of Democracy Against Dictatorship (UDD), Viphutalaeng Pattanaphumthai and Chinnawat Habunpard, joined the ceremony.

    Pol Gen Salang said it was time to restore order and called on the armed forces to get tough with senior military officers who joined the PAD protest.

    Pol Gen Salang named Gen Pathompong Kesornsuk, chief adviser to the Supreme Command, Gen Panthep Puvanatnurak, former Fourth Army chief and Vice-Adm Phajun Tamprateep, a close aide to Privy Council president Gen Prem Tinsulanonda as PAD allies.

    The PAD brushed aside Pol Gen Salang's threat to surround Government House and cut off food and water.

    PAD core member Somkiat Pongpaiboon, a Democrat party MP, said the PAD leaders considered Pol Gen Salang's remark an empty threat which would not materialise.

    Army specialist Maj-Gen Khattiya Sawasdipol said he and the UDD security guards who call themselves "King Taksin's Warriors" may not join as he has his own fighting strategy.

    He said he was not a supporter of the UDD or the "red-shirt" group, but he despised the PAD's siege of Government House and the group's reference to the monarchy in its rally speeches.

    He insisted he had not been involved in UDD demonstrations. He just trained hard-core UDD supporters who disagreed with the PAD's actions.

    Another army specialist, Gen Trairong Intaratat, on Wednesday questioned Maj-Gen Khattiya about his role in the UDD after he helped train UDD supporters.

    Bangkok Post

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