By Jocelyn Gecker and Jake Coyle
BANGKOK (AP) — The three-finger salute from the Hollywood movie The Hunger Games is being used as a real symbol of resistance in Thailand. Protesters against the military coup are flashing the gesture as a silent act of rebellion, and they’re being threatened with arrest if they ignore warnings to stop.
Thailand’s military rulers said Tuesday they were monitoring the new form of opposition to the coup. Reporters witnessed the phenomenon and individuals were captured on film making the raised-arm salute.
“Raising three fingers has become a symbol in calling for fundamental political rights,” said anti-coup activist Sombat Boonngam-anong on his Facebook page. He called on people to raise “3 fingers, 3 times a day” — at 9 a.m., 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. — in safe public places where no police or military are present.
The gesture emerged over the weekend as protesters joined small flash mobs, or stood alone, flashing three fingers in the air.
“We know it comes from the movie, and let’s say it represents resistance against the authorities,” Col. Weerachon Sukhondhapatipak, a spokesman for the junta, told The Associated Press.
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