Yingluck pledges not to enforce security law on rubber protesters

Prime Minister Yingluck pledged not to enforce the tough security law on rubber farmers blockading Asia highway in the South, saying the existing disaster relief and prevention law now in place is enough.

She said that now the governor of Nakhon Si Thammarat was working closely with other relevant government agencies in the bid to control the situation and the law he announced was enough while the security law was not necessary.

She also called on the protesting rubber farmers to end the protest and refrain from resorting to violent means.

Deputy Commerce Minister Nattawut Saikur expressed optimistic that the protest would end peacefully and the government would not use force to end their protest.

He said most farmers were happy with the government’s subsidy offer  and those who were still unsatisfied should be patient to listen to solution which the government was trying to bring out.

Before noon today the National Police Office Pol Gen Adul Saengsingkaew flew to Nakhon Si Thammarat to monitor the situation. He said that about 19 hardcore protesters are on the list to be arrested by the police for their role in yesterday’s riot.

Some of them have already been arrested, said the office spokesman Pol Maj-Gen Piya Uthaiyo.

Meanwhile rubber farmers in nearby Surat Thani made clear today they would not join the protest in Nakhon Si Thammarat as they deemed yesterday’s riot which protesters burnt police cars was unacceptable.

Songkhla rubber farmers also vowed not to join the protest in Nakhon Si Thammarat.