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There are still thousands of protesters blocking the roads and intersections of Bangkok in an attempt to over-throw the Pheu Thai Party, lead by Yinluck Shinawatra.

Although most areas of the city are still safe, if you are a tourist visiting Bangkok at this time it is recommended that you stay away from all rallies and demonstrations. 

Why are there protests in Bangkok? 

As mentioned, the protestors want the current prime minister, Yinluck Shinawatra, to step-down. Yinluck Shinawatra is the brother of Thaksin Shinawatra, the former prime minister of Thailand. Thaksin, a wealthy business tycoon turned politician, was accused of corruption, including buying votes, and fled from the country after a coup in 2006. He now lives in self-imposed exile, in Dubai. Early this year, Yinluck introduced a bill that may allow Thaksin to return to Thailand and resume power. Many believe that Thaksin is still secretly dictating through Yinluck. The protests began in November as the Thai people are “fed up with the corruption”. The protests are lead by Suthep Thaugsuban, a former deputy prime minister who resigned from the opposition democrat party to lead the rallies. Suthep claims there will be no negotiations. 

Does everyone in Thailand oppose the Pheu Thai Party? 

Actually No. You may have heard about the Red Shirts, a campaigning group formally known as the United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship. The Red Shirts are mostly rural workers from outside of Bangkok, although include some students, business people etc. Former prime minister, Thaksin, was popular among rural working class as he implemented policies which included funding for education and health-care. Despite living in exile, Thaksin is still supported by the Red Shirts, although this support has transferred to Pheu Thai Party, led by Yinluck. 

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