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Thursday, November 02, 2006

Pro-Thaksin forces 'head to Bangkok'

Bangkok Post: Defence Minister Boonrawd Somtas confirmed news reports saying "undercurrent"s from the northern and northeastern regions would arrive in Bangkok today, but said he was uncertain if there would be political demonstrations.

The minister said the pro-Thaksin, anti-coup forces wanted to test the ability of the government and the Council for National Security (CNS), as the junta is called.

Gen Boonrawd said the CNS had ordered regional army commanders to talk with the opposition forces and convince them to abandon plans to gather in Bangkok.

Assistant army chief and CNS assistant secretary-general Saprang Kalyanamitr expressed full confidence in the ability of military forces to "handle the situation if the undercurrents were to gather," but he did not elaborate.

Gen Saprang said he received reports that some pro-Thaksin groups had spread leaflets discrediting the CNS and the government, but dismissed such actions as "not serious matters".

Rather, he said, "The groups that give real impact are those that linked to old power," said Gen Saprang, apparently referring to the Thaksin administration. "If they think they can come back to power, I want them to understand that they greatly misunderstand the situation."
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