More explosions, gunfire in Bangkok

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Lumpini Park is the largest protest camp site in Bangkok (Pic: Arno Maierbrugger)
Lumpini Park is the largest protest camp site in Bangkok (Pic: Arno Maierbrugger)

New explosions and gunfire occurred near an anti-government protest site in Thailand’s capital early on February 25 after the protesters’ leader warned that government supporters were planning to bring armed militants to Bangkok. Weeks of unrest, in which protesters have barricaded key intersections of the city, have been interrupted by occasional bombs and gunfire, with one blast killing a woman and a young brother and sister in a central shopping district on February 23.

In explosions and gunfire near one protest site on the edge of Bangkok’s Lumpini Park in the early hours of February 25, two men were wounded. There was also an explosion near the office of the opposition Democrat Party. No one was hurt.

The protesters, who disrupted a general election this month leaving the country in political limbo, aim to unseat caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and erase the influence of her brother, former premier Thaksin Shinawatra, seen by many as the power behind the government.

Protest leader Suthep Thaugsuban accused Jatuporn Promphan, a leader of the “red shirt” supporters of Thaksin, of wanting to bring armed militants to Bangkok from their power base in the mainly rural north and northeast, setting the stage for potential conflict. He also accused police of doing nothing about it.

Yingluck called for dialogue to resolve the crisis.

“It’s time all sides turned to talk to each other,” she told reporters on Monday. “Many people have asked me to resign but I ask: Is resignation the answer? What if it creates a power vacuum?”

At least 20 people have been killed and more than 700 wounded since the protests began in November.

The Thai economyis oaying a heavy toll for the unrest. Trade figures for January could show the biggest fall in imports since the global financial crisis as consumption, construction and other activities weaken. The tourism sector might lose $2.7 billion this year if the crisis continues.

 

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

Lumpini Park is the largest protest camp site in Bangkok (Pic: Arno Maierbrugger)

New explosions and gunfire occurred near an anti-government protest site in Thailand’s capital early on February 25 after the protesters’ leader warned that government supporters were planning to bring armed militants to Bangkok. Weeks of unrest, in which protesters have barricaded key intersections of the city, have been interrupted by occasional bombs and gunfire, with one blast killing a woman and a young brother and sister in a central shopping district on February 23.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Lumpini Park is the largest protest camp site in Bangkok (Pic: Arno Maierbrugger)
Lumpini Park is the largest protest camp site in Bangkok (Pic: Arno Maierbrugger)

New explosions and gunfire occurred near an anti-government protest site in Thailand’s capital early on February 25 after the protesters’ leader warned that government supporters were planning to bring armed militants to Bangkok. Weeks of unrest, in which protesters have barricaded key intersections of the city, have been interrupted by occasional bombs and gunfire, with one blast killing a woman and a young brother and sister in a central shopping district on February 23.

In explosions and gunfire near one protest site on the edge of Bangkok’s Lumpini Park in the early hours of February 25, two men were wounded. There was also an explosion near the office of the opposition Democrat Party. No one was hurt.

The protesters, who disrupted a general election this month leaving the country in political limbo, aim to unseat caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and erase the influence of her brother, former premier Thaksin Shinawatra, seen by many as the power behind the government.

Protest leader Suthep Thaugsuban accused Jatuporn Promphan, a leader of the “red shirt” supporters of Thaksin, of wanting to bring armed militants to Bangkok from their power base in the mainly rural north and northeast, setting the stage for potential conflict. He also accused police of doing nothing about it.

Yingluck called for dialogue to resolve the crisis.

“It’s time all sides turned to talk to each other,” she told reporters on Monday. “Many people have asked me to resign but I ask: Is resignation the answer? What if it creates a power vacuum?”

At least 20 people have been killed and more than 700 wounded since the protests began in November.

The Thai economyis oaying a heavy toll for the unrest. Trade figures for January could show the biggest fall in imports since the global financial crisis as consumption, construction and other activities weaken. The tourism sector might lose $2.7 billion this year if the crisis continues.

 

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