Bangkok's rooftop security to be stepped up

Bangkok's rooftop security to be stepped up

BANGKOK - Police will step up security at key government agencies and deploy officers on rooftops around rally sites today to prevent incidents by third parties wanting to incite violence, a deputy police chief said yesterday.

Deputy Police Commissioner Pol Gen Worapong Chiewpreecha, deputy director of the Centre for Administration of Peace and Order (CAPO), said police and troops were being deployed to guard key government offices such as Government House and Parliament.

He said officers would also be deployed on high-rise buildings in the area to watch out for possible attacks by third-party groups.

Worapong said CAPO feared a third party may want to incite violence as protesters marched today along nine routes announced by the People's Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC). He believed third-party assailants were responsible for incidents that led to protesters being killed and injured near Ramkhamhaeng University last week.

Government offices would protect their own compounds today, but could also request additional assistance from police if they felt it necessary, said the deputy CAPO director, adding that police would clear roads for marchers, if they stayed peaceful and protesters did not try to enter government offices.

Police, he said, would also erect concrete barriers and barbed wire around key government offices, but would reduce the areas covered as protected zones.

CAPO spokesman Pol Maj Gen Piya Uthayo said the centre would also avoid confrontation with protesters planning to march on Government House today. Police would adopt a compromising stance, he said, and treat protesters with compassion in attempt to avoid violence. He also called on protesters to remain peaceful - not to carry weapons, and to avoid breaking into state agencies.

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