Thailand Braces For Chaos and Violence As Elections Go Ahead

Polls to open on Sunday for snap elections as Yingluck presses ahead with bid to reassert mandate

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Athit Perawongmetha / Reuters

Riot police officers stand guard at the gate of the Army Club where Thailand's Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra is holding a cabinet meeting in Bangkok January 28, 2014.

Embattled Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra is sticking to her guns and will oversee snap elections across the country on Feb. 2, despite calls from the country’s election commission earlier in the week to delay the polls by at least a month after a violent weekend in Bangkok.

After holding negotiations with the commission on Tuesday afternoon at a military facility in Bangkok, Yingluck’s administration appears to have held its ground, despite predictions of looming violence that analysts say will erupt in the capital if polls open on Sunday.

At least one anti-government protester was shot dead and 12 others injured over the weekend.

Violence also took place during the meeting between the government and the Election Commission today. Outside the building, struggles broke out between anti-government protesters and an unknown assailant who reportedly discharged a firearm into the crowd. Two people were injured during the incident and the crowd beat the gunman before he was sent to a hospital, according to media reports.

On Tuesday, a prominent rights group decried the opposition plan to obstruct fellow citizens from participating in early voting and called on political parties to reign in violence.

“The protesters claim they are fighting corruption and seeking reforms, but this doesn’t justify their use of force and intimidation to block voting,” said Brad Adams, Human Rights Watch’s Asia director, in a press statement.

According to analysts, Yingluck’s government is all but guaranteed victory in the weekend’s polls thanks in large part to its overwhelming popular support and because the opposition Democratic Party has long since committed to boycotting the elections.

13 comments
waiting333
waiting333

Thaksin wants a blood bath in Thailand just like 2010 and this Sunday it's going to happen. Sad that so many people will have to die trying to stop this Criminal Fugitive from taking over their Country. 

waiting333
waiting333

Yingluck and her brother are out to destroy Thailand and take over as Dictators. Soon Thailand will be like North Korea. 

NeverWrongSometimes
NeverWrongSometimes

Thaksin =  Ultra corrupt mass murderer

Suthep  =  Highly corrupt multi-murderer

Yingluck = Highly corrupt puppet (hasn't murdered anyone....yet)

Chalerm = Ultra corrupt father of a murderer


Sadly, there is no chance of honest Thai people winning.

KMD
KMD

@waiting333 

I bet, there will be no one killed on Feb 2 related to election. The anti-democracy mob in Bangkok is shrinking fast because its undemocratic cause is unjustified. They won't have enough misguided people to block thousands of election booths all over Bangkok. Certainly, in the South, except the three bordered provinces, all election booths won't be opened. But, like the events on Jan 26, people in all other parts of the country can go to vote without obstruction.

Teddy525
Teddy525

@waiting333 I completely agree... and it's so sad to see the country go to ruins at the hands of the Shinawatra family. If they keep selling off the country for their own personal gains, soon there will be nothing left. 

waiting333
waiting333

@KMD @waiting333 Yea , and having the Red Shirt thugs paid for by Thaksin threatening them with death if they don't vote always works. Thaksin and his puppet idiot sister are going to destroy this Country. They have already lost Billions of the Tax Payers money. Corruption is rapid in their party. What's sad is the western countries won't do anything because they value Thailand as allies in Asia. 

KMD
KMD

@waiting333 @KMD  

You said that there would be a blood bath today, while I said that there would be no one killed today.Today events are proving that I was right. 


The claim that Thaksin paid someones to threaten people with death if they did not go to vote is just a hallucination.

waiting333
waiting333

@NeverWrongSometimes @waiting333   So funny you people don't add the fact that the Red Shirt thugs brought to their guns, bomb, knives and other weapons to their protest. They attacked the Army. Killing many Army guys.