Curfew imposed in southern Thailand as rubber protest drags on
BANGKOK (REUTERS) - Protesters blocked a highway in southern Thailand for a second day on Tuesday in a bid to force the government to increase a subsidy for rubber farmers, even though a curfew was imposed in the area after clashes with riot police on Monday.
"We have put in place a 24-hour curfew to maintain order. Our biggest concern now is the safety of protesters and police," said Wirot Chiwarangsan, governor of Nakhon Si Thammarat province, where the protest is taking place.
Despite the order, about 200 protesters gathered at a major intersection on the highway early on Tuesday, disrupting traffic.
Varathep Rattanakorn, a minister at the prime minister's office, told reporters after a ministerial meeting on the matter that the government would not renegotiate a rubber subsidy offered to farmers last week.