As the world is battling with the onslaught of COVID-19, Pakistan and Chile are going through major political upheavals.
Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM), an alliance of 11 opposition parties has launched a three-phased anti-government movement under an “action plan” to oust the Khan-led Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) government.
In addition to Pakistan, Thailand is also experiencing protest by thousands of pro-democracy activists who have taken to the streets of Thailand, calling for administrative changes.
Supporters of Pakistan opposition parties were converging for a countrywide protest campaign to oust Prime Minister Imran Khan, who they accuse of being installed by the military in a rigged 2018 election.
Nine major opposition parties formed a joint platform called the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) last month to begin a nationwide agitation against the government.
More opposition rallies are on the calendar. The next one is next weekend, in Quetta, and will be led by Fazlur Rahman, whose religious right-wing conservative outfit is expected to attract conservative-minded Pakistanis. The eventual plan is for a long march in January to culminate in Islamabad in a massive show of strength.
Thailand’s anti-government movement is growing bolder and several anti-monarchy hashtags trending on social media in recent days are now being chanted on Bangkok streets. But protesters are risking lengthy prison sentences by breaking long-standing taboos against criticizing the monarchy.
Already, prominent protest leaders have been arrested on charges such as sedition, which could lead to seven years behind bars. The movement began in earnest after former general and coup leader Prayut returned to power following disputed elections in 2019. Another central demand of the protesters is for the military-drafted constitution to be rewritten as they say it allows the military to hold onto political power.
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