The latest in a series of pop culture-infused student protests in Thailand has adopted a Harry Potter theme. According to The Guardian, roughly 200 protesters dressed as members of the wizarding world gathered at Bangkok’s democracy monument and called for reform to the country’s monarchy. The protests have been unusually frank, The Guardian reports, given the country’s lese majeste laws, which render criticizing the monarchy punishable by 15 years in prison.
Per Variety, some dubbed the protest “Harry Potter versus He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named”—a reference to both Harry Potter villain Voldemort and King Maha Vajiralongkorn. Since taking the throne in 2016, the king has seized greater emergency powers and personally taken control over some military units as well as billions of dollars’ worth of palace assets, The Guardian notes.
“Talking about this is not an act to topple the monarchy, but to allow the monarchy to exist in Thai society in the right way and legitimately under a democratic and a constitutional monarchy,” 34-year-old lawyer Anon Nampa told the crowd, per The Guardian.