Friday, April 24, 2009

Thai Politics: PM lifts state of emergency on Friday

Prime Minster Abhisit Vejjajiva on Friday lifted the state of emergency he had imposed 12 days ago on Bangkok and five surrounding provinces to quell anti-government protests.

Abhisit announced early Friday at the end of a two-day joint House session that he had decided to lift the state of emergency to show the government's sincerity in seeking national reconciliation.

"Lifting the state of emergency is one of the measures to find a solution for the country,'' Abhisit told the parliamentary session shortly after midnight.

"The government wants reconciliation and to move the country forward,'' Abhisit told lawmakers early Friday.

Small groups of a soldiers posted at various sensitive locations throughout the capital had been withdrawn from the streets Friday morning.

Abhisit declared a state of emergency in Bangkok and its neighbouring provinces on April 12 to deal with the protests that instigated widespread violent in Bangkok.

Earlier he imposed the state in Pattaya after the red shirts stormed into the meeting venue of Asian Summit in Pattaya, forcing the government to cancel the summit.

The laws allowed the the army to launch crackdown on the red shirted protesters who were loyal to fugitive ex-PM Thaksin Shinawatra.

Source: The Nation

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