Hundreds protest in Bangkok against senate’s blocking election winner

Bangkok, Jul 23 (EFE).- Hundreds of people protested Sunday in Bangkok against the political deadlock that has prevented the winner of Thailand’s elections from becoming prime minister.

Turnout at the rally, which forced the closure of a major intersection in the capital, was affected by heavy rainfall earlier in the day.

Despite the inclement monsoon, hundreds of people turned out to reject the Senate’s role in blocking the appointment of Pita Limjaroenrat as prime minister.

“What are the elections for? They cheated us,” read a banner hung from a bridge near the protest.

Pita, leader of the progressive Move Forward party that unexpectedly won the May 14 elections, was suspended from parliament by the Constitutional Court on Wednesday pending an investigation against him.

Move Forward, after two failed attempts, has ceded the task of forming a government to its coalition partner Pheu Thai, which came second in the elections.

The two parties form a coalition along with 6 other groups that make up 312 seats of the 500 members of the elected House of Representatives.

But Pita also needed to win support from the 250 royalist, pro-military senators – handpicked in 2019 by the junta that ruled the county between 2014 and 2019, who have stood in his way, resulting in a political deadlock.

Pheu Thai, linked to the influential Shinawatra clan, on Sunday conducted a second round of talks with conservative parties to gather more support and reach the necessary simple majority in the bicameral Parliament vote scheduled for Thursday.

Hours before the demonstration, a group of young Move Forward supporters went to the Pheu Thai headquarters to remind the party’s leaders of their commitment not to join forces with factions that are tied to the defunct military junta. EFE


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