Thailand: Protest Violence Mostly Over

But some fighting continues as Bangkok burns
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 20, 2010 9:53 AM CDT
Thailand: Protest Violence Mostly Over
Anti-government protesters who have taken refuge at a temple during Thai army crackdown, leave under police vigil, in downtown Bangkok Thursday, May 20, 2010 in Bangkok,Thailand.   (Vincent Yu)

The Thai government declared today that it had mostly quelled 10 weeks of violent protests that left many parts of the capital aflame. A nighttime curfew was extended in Bangkok and 23 other provinces for three more days, as troops and die-hard anti-government protesters exchanged sporadic fire in parts of the city. A military operation yesterday cleared most of a protest encampment in the center of the capital, leaving 15 dead and 96 wounded.

A special police unit today led more than a thousand people—many of them women and children—away from a Buddhist temple in the heart of the former "Red Shirt" protest zone. Six bodies were found on its grounds. The police had the approval of the temple's abbot, but many feared jail or abuse, and cried, clung to one another, or fought the police."We won. We won," shouted one woman. "The Red Shirts will rise again." Three more Red Shirt leaders surrendered to authorities today, joining the five who surrendered yesterday. (More Thailand stories.)

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