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Anti-government 'Bangkok Shutdown' gets smaller

Feb. 28, 2014 at 2:13 PM   |   Comments

BANGKOK, Feb. 28 (UPI) -- The Bangkok Shutdown, a citywide protest intended to force the ouster of the Thai government, will be reduced in scope this weekend, organizers said Friday.

Seven rally stages installed across Bangkok will be dismantled and all blocked roads will be cleared. All activities will be moved to a single public park, Lumpini Park, the protesting People's Democratic Reform Committee announced.

The attempted shutdown of the city began Jan. 13, attracting thousands to the stages to hear speeches and other activities, but attendance has fallen noticeably in the past two weeks, the Bangkok Post reported Friday.

"The PDRC would like to return traffic lanes to our Bangkok brothers and sisters," the group's secretary-general Suthep Thaugsuban said, adding the change in plans was not forced by the Thai government.

Twenty people have been killed and an estimated 700 have been injured since protests -- aimed at removing the government of President Yingluck Shinawatra from power -- began in October.

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