Friday, April 9, 2010

Thai Protesters Storm Into TV Station

Thai anti-government protesters stormed Friday into a telecom company compound where authorities had shut down their vital TV channel, as soldiers and riot police tried to hold them back with tear gas and water cannons.

It was the first use of force by the government in monthlong protests aimed at ousting Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva and forcing new elections. Meanwhile, the Criminal Court said it had issued arrest warrants for three top protest leaders.

The ''Red Shirt'' protesters had threatened to charge into the building if a senior military commander didn't come out to negotiate with them to restore their People Channel, or PTV.

Hurling rocks, the protesters breached the barbed-wire perimeter of the Thaicom Public Co. Ltd. within minutes, though they were not immediately able to enter the main building. As they moved into the compound, security forces threw tear gas canisters and fired water cannons but then quickly retreated into the main building as thousands of protesters swarmed around it.

Some security forces were seen throwing down their shields and riot gear and shaking hands with the protesters. The Red Shirts offered water to soldiers and police.

To read more: http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/world/AP-AS-Thailand-Politics.html?_r=1&ref=asia

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