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Thai protesters call for new demonstration on Friday

[BANGKOK] Thai protesters called a halt late on Thursday to a demonstration by tens of thousands of people held in defiance of a government ban, but said protests would now take place daily in the same place.

"At 17.00, we will meet here every day to protest against the government and the person who signs off on coups," student leader Jutatip Sirikhan told protesters.

Protesters have demanded the ousting of Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, a former junta leader, and also seek to curb the powers of the monarchy, accusing it of assenting to coups that have entrenched decades of military influence.

Tens of thousands of Thai protesters cheered and chanted into the night in central Bangkok on Thursday in a show of mass defiance to a ban on demonstrations designed to end more than three months of anti-government action.

"Like dogs cornered, we are fighting till our deaths,"Panupong "Mike Rayong" Jadnok, one the high-profile protest leaders who remains free, told the crowd. "We won't fall back. We won't run away. We won't go anywhere."

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Protesters ignored police appeals to disperse and spilled from the Ratchaprasong Intersection across streets and walkways, their mobile phones shimmering in the night. The location was the scene of bloodshed in 2010, during more than a decade of violence between supporters and opponents of the Thai establishment.

REUTERS

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