Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Thai Parliament Postpones Session Amid Protests

The Thai Parliament postponed a scheduled session Tuesday as protesters continued to occupy the streets of the main government district in Bangkok. But there were also signs that the crowds of demonstrators, who are demanding that the government step down, were thinning out.

The speaker of the House of Representatives, Chai Chidchob, ordered the postponement of a joint session of parliament after most members, including the prime minister, did not show up.

Demonstrators who have camped out near the parliament building lined up to give blood, which protest leaders plan to pour into the compound of the prime minister’s office. Health authorities have criticized the plan, but protest leaders said it symbolized their frustrations.

The protesters shut down parts of the capital on Monday, but appeared a long way from forcing the Thai government to step down. The demonstrators are angry that a series of court decisions in recent years have banned political parties allied with Thaksin Shinawatra, the former prime minister, and they remain resentful over the 2006 military coup that ousted Mr. Thaksin from power.

Some shops and offices on the northern outskirts of Bangkok closed Monday as convoys of protesters converged on a military base that had become a sort of field headquarters for government leaders, including Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva.

Grenades fired at another army camp in Bangkok injured two soldiers and highlighted the risk of further violence during the protest, which on Sunday drew 100,000 people, many of them farmers, to the neighborhood of ministries and government offices in Bangkok.

To read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/17/world/asia/17thai.html?ref=asia

No comments:

Post a Comment