Thai protesters want PM to resign

June 20, 2008 at 10:02 AM
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BANGKOK, June 20 (UPI) -- Protesters scuffled with police Friday in Bangkok in an attempt to garner Thai Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej's resignation, media officials say.

Thai Public Broadcasting Service Managing Director Thepchai Yong said the thousands of protesters were part of a "dangerous" conflict regarding Samak's time in office, the Voice of America said.

"In the past we had some figures -- some respectable figures -- who can intervene. But now it seems that there are two opposing forces going at each other's throat and we don't see anybody that can come between and make peace between these two forces," Thepchai said. "It's a very dangerous time, very, very dangerous."

Protests against the prime minister began in May when it was announced the government was considering amending the country's constitution. Such amendments would have hindered a corruption investigation into former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, the Voice of America said.

Despite the escalating conflict in Thailand, political analysts told the U.S. broadcaster the protests will likely not lead to a bloody coup similar to that the country suffered in 2006.

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