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Thailand Red Shirts

Renewed violence in Bangkok

Luc Citrinot, eTN  May 08, 2010

Thailand's reconcilation process painfully agreed upon by Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva and the Red Shirts leader is again at stake, following renewed violence on Friday evening in Bangkok's city center.

It was reported that a policeman was killed as a motorcyclist shot at the police near the Bangkok Bank office on Silom Road. Three other people were also injured including civilians. A second attack occured three hours later around 1:30 am, with an explosion at Lumpini Park gate. According to first reports from the "Nation" daily newspaper, one policeman was killed with two other people, and three soldiers were wounded. The bomb model was a grenade M79 - the same model than the ones used on April 22 on Silon Road with the police believing it was fired again from an area near Saladaeng Skytrain station.

The latest incident is likely to further reinforce travel bans from various countries for Thailand. The Tourism Authority of Thailand so far did not consider postponing its annual travel show, TTM (Thailand Travel Mart), according to TAT officials. The show which will take place in Bangkok in early June has already over 400 delegates confirmed.

Meanwhile, prior to the newest violence casualties, Red Shirt protesters accepted Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva's five-point road map for national reconciliation by stating that the month-long occupation of Rachaprasong and Lumpini park areas would stop on Monday, following a buddhist ceremony to commemorate those who died during the April 10 confrontation. Both the PM and Red Shirts assured that the latest violence would not derail the reconciliation process.

Renewed violence in Bangkok
Lumpini Park across Silom Road with the Red Shirts camp on May 2 / Photo by Luc Citrinot

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