Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Thai rebels block troop train

A CRUNCH day is approaching in the 'red shirt' rebellion against the Thai government.

Reports the Washington Post: "Thailand's tense political standoff was nearing a climax on Thursday with anti-government protesters preparing for imminent battle in central Bangkok against tens of thousands of armed troops.

"The 'red shirt' uprising showed the first signs of spreading beyond Bangkok to the protesters' stronghold in the northeast after they blocked a train carrying troops.

"The red shirts mistakenly thought the train was on its way to Bangkok, but it was taking troops and military vehicles to the south to help contain a Muslim insurgency, a railway police officer told Reuters by telephone from Khon Kaen.

"Some 40,000 red-shirted supporters of former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra have fortified their redoubt in a Bangkok commercial district with home-made barricades, expecting the army to evict them any time. 'We've heard from insiders in the government that April 26 is their deadline,' Kwanchai Sarakam, 57, a red shirt leader from the northeast told Reuters."