(4 December) A government-sponsored event showcasing the flood prevention project in Prachinburi province has been forced to end early after around 100 protesters stormed the venue.
The event, organised by government officials and held at Wang Sam Rarn Hotel in Sri Mahapho district, was intended to promote the water management overhaul, which is one of major policies adopted by Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra following the incident of 2011 Great Flood.
But even before the show kicked off, a large group of protesters appeared at the hotel entrance with banners and loudspeakers mounted on vehicles, demanding the event to be cancelled. The protesters argued that the project might end up causing extensive flood in Prachinburi.
The crowd later grew more aggressive and pushed through the security barricades manned by the police into the venue, which was held inside the hotel, much to the bemusement of around 1,000 people who were waiting for the event to start.
The police attempted to negotiate the protesters into leaving the venue, begging them to hold the rally after listening to keynote speeches of the officials, but some responded by blowing their whistles in defiance. Many shouted that the event must be cancelled.
Eventually, the event organisers declared that they would no longer proceed with the event.
If approved, the flood prevention project is expected to cost 350 billion baht.
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