Thai Protesters Stand Ground


Thousands of Thai anti-government protesters remained barricaded inside their encampment in Bangkok on Wednesday, demanding more details on a proposed roadmap aimed at ending the tense standoff.

The “Red Shirts,” whose eight-week-old rallies have shut down parts of Bangkok and sparked the deadliest civil unrest in 18 years, agreed on Tuesday to join Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva’s proposed reconciliation process.

But they are still refusing to disperse, calling on Abhisit to make clear when he will dissolve parliament for elections and to withdraw troops.

The Reds’ protest site in the commercial heart of the capital remained encircled with barricades of piled-up truck tyres, razor wire and bamboo stakes, despite signs the rivals are edging towards reconciliation.

“End double standards. Dissolve parliament,” read a banner inside the camp, where orange-robed monks were performing an early morning chanting ceremony on the rally stage as long lines of people queued for breakfast.

Red Shirt leaders said on Tuesday they had unanimously agreed to join the reconciliation roadmap proposed by the embattled prime minister to prevent further bloodshed.

Abhisit said in a nationally televised address Monday that he was ready to hold elections on November 14 if all parties accepted his reconciliation plan.

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