“Authorities arrested Arnon and Panupong at 5 a.m.,” the rights group said, adding that Arnon was arrested for a speech he gave in the northern city of Chiang Mai. He said the reason for Panupong’s arrest was not clear.
Protests in Thailand escalated for three months and protesters set up camp outside Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha’s offices to demand his resignation on Wednesday night. The government said it also acted after protesters obstructed a royal procession.
“It is extremely necessary to introduce an urgent measure to end this situation effectively and quickly in order to maintain peace and order,” state television said.
It was accompanied by a document outlining measures that took effect from 4 a.m. local time (9 p.m. GMT) to ban large gatherings and allow authorities to ban people from entering any area that ‘they designate.
It also prohibits: “The publication of news, other media and electronic information containing messages which may create fear or intentionally distort the information, thereby creating misunderstandings which will affect national security or the peace and order.”
Tens of thousands of protesters marched in Bangkok on Wednesday. Protesters who had occupied the space outside Prayuth’s Bangkok office were cleared by police early Thursday, a Reuters witness said.
The protest movement is aimed at removing Prayuth, who seized power in a 2014 coup that was to end a decade of violence between supporters and opponents of the country’s establishment.
Those parading the streets also want a new constitution and have called for a reduction in the powers of King Maha Vajiralongkorn – breaking a long-held taboo on criticism of the monarchy.
Protesters shouted outside the king’s motorcade in Bangkok on Tuesday after the arrest of 21 protesters. On Wednesday, some protesters slowed down a convoy carrying Queen Suthida, waving with three fingers and chanting “get out” to police protecting the vehicle.