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Demonstrators in Bangkok streets demand Yingluck step down



by Joseph Earnest  January 13, 2014


Newscast Media BANGKOK—Tens of thousands of anti-government protesters have blocked parts of the Thai capital in a bid to stop elections planned for February 2 and force the resignation of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra.

Parts of the Thai capital are full of people. At least seven important street intersections have been blocked by anti-government protesters, who have set up mobile stages. The blockade, they say, will last until the interim government led by Prime Minster Yingluck Shinawatra is no longer in power.

They are not willing to compromise or negotiate, as repeatedly stated by Suthep Thaugsuban, the spokesman of the protesters and former member of parliament for the "Democratic Party." "There is only victory or defeat - nothing in between," he says

Drawn-out conflict

The protesters don't only want to get Yingluck out of office. They want to see the "Thaksin regime" - as they call it - ousted. Anti-government demonstrators and the opposition see Yingluck as a puppet of her brother Thaksin Shinawatra, who was ousted in a military coup in the year 2006.

                                Thai protesters shut down Bangkok

Repeat of 2008?

The current circumstances are similar to 2008: Thailand's anti-corruption agency (NACC) has announced it will start conducting investigations against a total of 308 senators and members of the recently dissolved parliament. The politicians - most of whom are members of Yingluck's party - are accused of voting for an illegal alteration of the constitution which aims to change the constitution of the senate. They had fought to make sure that all representatives of the senate be democratically elected. Currently, only half of the senators are elected and the other half is there by appointment.

Thailand expert Michael Nelson thinks it likely that the accused politicians will be found guilty. Such a verdict could possibly lead to impeachment proceedings for the government. "It seems difficult not to believe in a cynical plot against the hated Thaksin supporters."      Add Comments>>

Source: Deutsche Welle














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