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Shots, blasts as Thai protest rivals clash on election eve
AFP/Google ^ | 21/1/2014 | William Davies

Posted on 02/01/2014 11:40:07 AM PST by mojito

Explosions and heavy gunfire rattled Bangkok Saturday as pro- and anti-government protesters clashed on the eve of controversial Thai elections seen as unlikely to end a cycle of violence in the kingdom after months of opposition rallies.

Bystanders, security personnel and journalists raced to take cover in a shopping mall after a masked gunman man began spraying bullets from an assault rifle during confrontations between government supporters and opposition demonstrators, according to an AFP reporter.

At least six people were injured as a busy intersection in a northern suburb of the capital was turned into a battle zone with volleys of sustained gunfire ricocheting off buildings for over an hour in a daylight attack that sent shockwaves across the city.

Tensions are high in the capital ahead of snap elections on Sunday, which opposition demonstrators have vowed to block as they seek to prevent the likely re-election of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra.

Bangkok has been rocked by weeks of sometimes bloody political violence during rallies by a loose coalition opposed to Yingluck and the enduring influence of her brother Thaksin Shinawatra -- a former premier ousted by the military in 2006.

Saturday's clashes happened after demonstrators blocking ballot boxes from being delivered from the Lak Si district office -- one of 50 in the capital -- were confronted by a group of some 200 government supporters, some armed with sticks and metal bars.

At least two explosions were heard in the area before the firing began.

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TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Extended News; Foreign Affairs
KEYWORDS: civilwar; thailand
Thailand seems about ready to slip into civil war.
1 posted on 02/01/2014 11:40:07 AM PST by mojito
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To: mojito

It should be divided north and south. New Thai Republic and Kingdom of Siam.
I read an article on it. Very strange conflict where the sides are called ‘the yellows’ and ‘the reds’ like its some kind of game show.

It won’t be a Czechoslovakia split though. There’s going to be blood.

2 posted on 02/01/2014 11:45:11 AM PST by Viennacon
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