BANGKOK — Bangkok’s own War of the Roses wasn’t any closer to being settled six months after it began, with the city today sending heavy equipment into the streets where the vendors of Pak Khlong Talad rose up in revolt recently.
Small backhoes were parked Tuesday morning along the roads where the historic flower market has operated for decades, despite a petition from vendors seeking a hold on their eviction from the street market.
The city’s move came after what happened there Friday after its deadline for vendors to remove their stalls passed, when flower sellers dumped flowers in the road to block traffic and demanded an audience with Bangkok Gov. Sukhumbhand Paribatra.
Soldiers, police and municipal officers have kept the peace in the area since then.
Dozens of vendors Monday went to City Hall to ask for another three-month extension, offering to only set up shop from 8:30pm to 4am.
Though a number had already moved inside the nearby Yodpiman and Pak Khlong Triphet markets only a few minutes walk away, vendor spokesman Pirome Chitkorn insisted they can not make a living selling inside the building away from foot traffic.
Answering for the city, Vallop Suwandee of the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration said several stays of eviction had been granted before, and authorities were out of patience. He said only 50 vendors remain selling on the footpaths.