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Thailand's Army Revokes Constitution in Coup


Thailand's military says it has taken control of the government, revoked the constitution and declared martial law in an apparent coup.

A statement broadcast on Thai television late Tuesday says forces loyal to Thailand's King have taken control of Bangkok and would decide on political reforms. Military vehicles rolled through the streets and surrounded government buildings.

The military announced that the country's stock market, banks and schools will close Wednesday and called top civil servants to a meeting in Bangkok to discuss the country's new policy.

Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra is in New York where he was scheduled to address the United Nations General Assembly meeting later today. That speech has been canceled, but a spokesman with Mr. Thaksin insisted the prime minister is still in control.

Just before the military announced it had control, government-owned television carried a statement from the prime minister declaring a state of emergency.

The U.S. government has issued a statement urging the Thai people to remain peaceful and obey the rule of law. There have been no reports of violence.

In April, Mr. Thaksin dissolved Parliament and called elections after weeks of demonstrations calling for his resignation. The opposition boycotted the election, however, and the courts later deemed the poll illegal.

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