BANGKOK - Pro-government red shirts in a number of provinces burnt coffins in a symbolic gesture yesterday aimed at Constitutional Court judges who ruled on Wednesday to remove caretaker prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra from office.
Red shirts will meet today at Aksa Road in Nakhon Pathom in what is expected to be a mass gathering.
Provincial red-shirt leaders said they would resort to all means possible to defend the administration.
Udon Thani red-shirt leader Kwanchai Praipana said 1,000 red shirts from Udon Thani with 100 trained red guards from the Democracy Protection Volunteers would come to Aksa Road. The protesters would stay till Wednesday and would not march anywhere.
Apichart Inson (aka DJ Uan), a leader of the red shirt's Rak Chiang Mai 51, said red shirts from the North were mobilising in tandem with red shirts in other provinces and had gathered at provincial halls including at Lampang and Kamphaeng Phet to burn coffins.
He said letters of protest were sent to provincial governors to show the world that the red shirts rejected the court's ruling against the prime minister, who was elected by millions and that people shall rise to fight for a just society.
"Chiang Mai red shirts have joined reds from Kamphaeng Phet … It doesn't matter which group or which province we're from … We shall fight together," he added.
Apichart claimed that a million red shirts were expected to converge at Aksa Road today and people would see if there were more reds or more supporters of the anti-government People's Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC).
He said PDRC leader Suthep Thaugsuban had said earlier that the side with the smaller number of supporters would retreat.
In Khon Kaen, some 50 red shirts gathered to burn coffins with pictures of the Constitutional Court judges attached.
A declaration was also read before they prepared to travel to Aksa Road. Similar scenes took place at Ang Thong, Sing Buri, Lop Buri, Amnat Charoen and Uthai Thani.