Thai protesters disregard poll, still want Yingluck out

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No more ShinawatraAnti-government protesters in Bangkok planned to forge ahead on February 3 with efforts to topple Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, a day after a disrupted election that is unlikely to settle Thailand’s long-running political conflict.

On February 2, demonstrators blocked balloting in a fifth of the country’s constituencies and said Yingluck must resign and make way for an appointed “people’s council” to overhaul a political system they say has been taken hostage by her billionaire brother and former premier, Thaksin Shinawatra.

The election, which the main opposition party boycotted, is almost certain to return Yingluck to power and, with voting passing off peacefully across the north and northeast, Yingluck’s supporters will no doubt claim a legitimate mandate. Results are expected by February 23 when another round of voting will be held in the remaining constituencies.

But the vote is unlikely to change the dysfunctional status quo in a country popular with tourists and investors yet blighted by eight years of polarisation and turmoil, pitting the Bangkok-based middle class and royalist establishment against the mostly poor, rural supporters of the Shinawatras.

The election was peaceful, apart from a few scuffles, with no repeat of the chaos seen the previous day, when supporters and opponents of Yingluck clashed in north Bangkok. Seven people were wounded by gunshots or explosions.

Protersters were march on February 3 that ended at a camp at Lumpini Park in the center of Bangkok.

“Having gone through more than two months of protests, the election will strengthen Yingluck’s position, but her troubles are not over yet,” said Kan Yuanyong, director of the Siam Intelligence Unit think tank. “We’ll see a continuation of the conflict, the standoff remains and the likelihood of more violence could increase.”

The Election Commission said it expected legal challenges to be lodged to try to invalidate the poll and attack the legitimacy of the government.

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

Anti-government protesters in Bangkok planned to forge ahead on February 3 with efforts to topple Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, a day after a disrupted election that is unlikely to settle Thailand’s long-running political conflict.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

No more ShinawatraAnti-government protesters in Bangkok planned to forge ahead on February 3 with efforts to topple Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, a day after a disrupted election that is unlikely to settle Thailand’s long-running political conflict.

On February 2, demonstrators blocked balloting in a fifth of the country’s constituencies and said Yingluck must resign and make way for an appointed “people’s council” to overhaul a political system they say has been taken hostage by her billionaire brother and former premier, Thaksin Shinawatra.

The election, which the main opposition party boycotted, is almost certain to return Yingluck to power and, with voting passing off peacefully across the north and northeast, Yingluck’s supporters will no doubt claim a legitimate mandate. Results are expected by February 23 when another round of voting will be held in the remaining constituencies.

But the vote is unlikely to change the dysfunctional status quo in a country popular with tourists and investors yet blighted by eight years of polarisation and turmoil, pitting the Bangkok-based middle class and royalist establishment against the mostly poor, rural supporters of the Shinawatras.

The election was peaceful, apart from a few scuffles, with no repeat of the chaos seen the previous day, when supporters and opponents of Yingluck clashed in north Bangkok. Seven people were wounded by gunshots or explosions.

Protersters were march on February 3 that ended at a camp at Lumpini Park in the center of Bangkok.

“Having gone through more than two months of protests, the election will strengthen Yingluck’s position, but her troubles are not over yet,” said Kan Yuanyong, director of the Siam Intelligence Unit think tank. “We’ll see a continuation of the conflict, the standoff remains and the likelihood of more violence could increase.”

The Election Commission said it expected legal challenges to be lodged to try to invalidate the poll and attack the legitimacy of the government.

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