With cries of “Alla akbar” (God is great) members of the The Muslim Group for Peace rallied outside The Trendy building on Sukhumvit, Soi 13 in Bangkok today where they hoped to speak with members of the Syrian Consulate.
The Syrian Consulate, located on the second floor of the building, did not respond to the initial crowd of about 30 that gathered outside.
The main objective for members of the Group was to have the Consulate deported from the country to bring about change in the Syrian government with the ongoing violence and reinstate a new system to bring future peace.
“We come here to protest, to condemn, to ask the consulate to get out from Thailand,” said Abdul Aziz, a member of Group. “We don’t want…human beings to be killed by the soldiers.”
While many of the protestors stated they did not even have relatives in Syria their desire for reform and a more peaceful future for the countries people remained important to them, owing to their common Islamic faith.
Muslims in Thailand make up less than five per cent of the population where Buddhism is the dominant religion. The Group has rallied in the past to deal with issues concerning the Danish government and a previous ban on headscarves for certain Bangkok students.
As numbers grew outside the building various members spoke to the crowd about the violence that has continued to raise international concern. While the speeches varied from past violent incidences to what changes needed to be made the general feeling was that the government needed to step down for change.
Many of the members also made it clear that while a change in government was the first step another critical move toward peace would be for organizations, such as the United Nations, to step in and offer assistance.
“They will have to call for peace in Syria,” said Aziz. “Also to bring the international organizations, like the UN, to take part in Syria immediately.”
Holding banners displaying bloody images of the past outbreaks in Syria, members asked to directly hand over documents to the Syrian consulate.
The documents were a reiteration of the Group’s desire for peace in Syria and the removal of the Syrian consulate in Bangkok. While access to the Syrian consulate was not given the members were eventually allowed to move inside to the ground floor of the building.
After a number of speeches, a representative for the Syrian Consulate came to meet the waiting group. The representative was given the documents and is expected to share the information and appeal for change with the rest of the consulate.