Following the day that witnessed the worst night of violence amid the five-month-long protest movement in Thailand, the country's parliament decided to vote on several motions that seek constitutional reform on Wednesday.
During the violence that erupted on Tuesday, the movement witnessed the use of live ammunition for the first time, and at least 50 people sustained injuries.
However, the parliament is composed majorly of Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha's supporters, which means that any vote for a constitutional change is unlikely to happen. The protesters seek a change that may limit the monarchy's powers and the military, Phuket News reported.
The process of voting for such changes is expected to last for hours.
On Tuesday, while the lawmakers debate the possible amendments, protesters rallied outside the parliament building. The protesters clashed with pro-monarchy groups and the police in battles that covered the streets of Bangkok.
The police tried to disperse the protesters with tear gas and chemical-laced water fired from water cannons. On the other hand, the protesters tried to cut through the wire barricades that separated them from the police force outside the parliament.
According to the Associated Press, the police stated that during the protests, at least two people were shot. They added that one of the victims was a civilian shot in the hips, while the other was a pro-democracy protester who sustained a gunshot to the left thigh.
Aside from the two confirmed gunshot patients, the police believe that four other people sustained gunshot wounds. However, they have not yet talked to them to verify if the injuries were gotten from the live rounds. Maj. Gen. Piya Tawichai, the police spokesman, stated that all patients are being treated at the hospital.
Moreover, it was noted that 55 others suffered injuries during the street clashes. According to Bangkok's Erawan emergency medical center, people sustained more injuries that night than any night since the protests began late in July.
What did the lawmakers vote on?
The members of the country's Senate and House of Representatives were asked on Wednesday to give their votes on a total of seven motions. The motions included the degrees of reforms that will be made on the constitution that was proposed by the government, the people, and the opposition.
However, monarchial reform was not included in any of the six proposals.
On the other hand, the seventh motion was brought by iLaw, a Thai social reform group which received huge support from the pro-democracy protesters. The proposal seeks to abolish the current constitution and rewrite a whole new charter covering every chapter, even including the monarchy.
Rubber Ducks vs. Water Cannons
Tuesday's violence began when protesters started to cut through the barricades around the Thai parliament.
The protesters carried giant inflatable rubber ducks, donned rain ponchos, goggles and hats as they threw smoke bombs at the police. In response, the police fired chemical-laced water at them, which they shielded with their giant inflatable ducks, CNN reported.