Four-year-old Lapassarada Mung-opas submitted the winning entry in a contest to name the baby koala at the Chiang Mai Zoo in northern Thailand. Her suggestion, Prong-dong -- "Reconciliation" -- was picked over 496 other names, including "Ice," "Sugar" and "Lotus."
"The situation now is so dire" that people with political differences "can't look each other in the eye," Nipon Wichairat, the zoo's assistant director, said Wednesday.
"It's a reminder for us to turn to each other," he said, explaining the winning entry.
The girl's grandmother, Lampang Marod, 66, said the family visited the zoo last month during the unrest in Bangkok and didn't take sides in the conflict. "We don't discuss politics," she said.
The koala, or joey, was born last year and recently left her mother's pouch.
Lapassarada, who lives in Nonthaburi, a province just north of Bangkok, will receive 10,000 baht ($307) and lifetime free admission to the zoo for her winning submission.