News / Asia

Candidate Registration for Thai Polls Proceeds

Photographs of Poowanida Kunpalin from the ruling Puea Thai Party are seen as her documents are inspected during a registration of election candidates near the Government complex in Bangkok, Thailand, Dec. 28, 2013.Photographs of Poowanida Kunpalin from the ruling Puea Thai Party are seen as her documents are inspected during a registration of election candidates near the Government complex in Bangkok, Thailand, Dec. 28, 2013.
x
Photographs of Poowanida Kunpalin from the ruling Puea Thai Party are seen as her documents are inspected during a registration of election candidates near the Government complex in Bangkok, Thailand, Dec. 28, 2013.
Photographs of Poowanida Kunpalin from the ruling Puea Thai Party are seen as her documents are inspected during a registration of election candidates near the Government complex in Bangkok, Thailand, Dec. 28, 2013.
Ron Corben
Thailand took another step toward February 2 general elections with candidates able to register Saturday and Sunday in most provincial regions. Anti-government protesters disrupted registration in seven largely southern regions. Pre-election tensions remain high after a guard at a protest site in the capital was killed in a drive-by shooting.

Thailand's Election Commission said registration of candidates largely proceeded peacefully.

Commissioners said protesters prevented candidate registration in seven provinces, largely in southern areas that are strongholds of the opposition Democrat Party, which is boycotting the polls.

In Bangkok, where clashes between police and protestors Thursday left to two dead and more than 160 injured, a drive-by shooting at an anti-government protest site Saturday killed one man and wounded several.

Thai anti-government protesters mourn in front of the picture of Yuthana Ong-art, who was shot and killed on Friday night, during a condolence ceremony in Bangkok, Dec. 28, 2013.Thai anti-government protesters mourn in front of the picture of Yuthana Ong-art, who was shot and killed on Friday night, during a condolence ceremony in Bangkok, Dec. 28, 2013.
x
Thai anti-government protesters mourn in front of the picture of Yuthana Ong-art, who was shot and killed on Friday night, during a condolence ceremony in Bangkok, Dec. 28, 2013.
Thai anti-government protesters mourn in front of the picture of Yuthana Ong-art, who was shot and killed on Friday night, during a condolence ceremony in Bangkok, Dec. 28, 2013.
Nititorn Lamlhuea, an adviser to a student-led network protesting the poll, said the 26-year-old man killed in the shooting was a volunteer guard at the site.
 
Nititorn said two vehicles came close to the protest site at about 3.30 am on Saturday and gunmen from one vehicle fired randomly in the direction of the camp. Several were wounded and Yutthana was one of those shot with an automatic rifle. He died later in hospital.

On Sunday afternoon, in another attack, a small explosive device was thrown into the protest area and five people were injured.

The Network of Students and People for Reform of Thailand was involved in the clash with police at an election registration venue in central Bangkok Thursday, the worst political violence since 2010.

After Thursday's violence, the Election Commission called on Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra to postpone the vote. Yingluck has said the February vote is a way for the country to move forward from the political crisis. On Sunday the Civil Service Association of Thailand said it supported calls for the election to be delayed and reforms to be implemented before fresh polls.

Student advisor Nititorn said the protest movement feared more conflict if the election proceeded.

Nititorn said the movement supported the electoral process but the country was not yet ready and wanted to see change beneficial for the people with more involvement with less corruption and reforms.

Yingluck said political reforms could be carried out after the elections and has announced a commission to make recommendations on political and economic changes.

But a protester at the Ratchdamneon rally site Sunday said the early poll would only benefit the governing Pheu Thai Party. 

"[The Government] tries to postpone everything and go to the election. That election is not pure [corruption free], it's not good for all the people in the country, it's just good for them, for the government, for the Pheu Thai Party only for the Thaksin Shinawatra. That's it that’s what [Yingluck] wants to do now," he said.

Thaksin is the prime minister's older brother, and has lived in exile since 2008 to avoid a a two-year jail term for corruption. The recent protests started after the government passed an amnesty bill in October seen as favoring Thaksin. The bill was later quashed by the Senate.

Protest leaders are threatening to "seize" Bangkok after the New Year holidays in a bid to halt the election. Government supporters are also threatening to rally. The Thai Army says it will intervene if further bloodshed is beyond control of the police.

  • Thai anti government protesters rally next to riot policemen during the registration of constituency candidates in Nakhon Si Thammarat, Dec. 28, 2013.
  • Riot policemen walk around during a registration of election candidates at a bus terminal centre near the Government complex in Bangkok.
  • Photographs of Poowanida Kunpalin from the ruling Puea Thai Party are seen as her documents are inspected during a registration of election candidates at a bus terminal centre near the Government complex in Bangkok.
  • Election commission officers and candidates gather during a registration of election candidates near the Government complex in Bangkok.
  • A Thai anti-government protester cries and takes picture during a condolence ceremony for Yuthana Ong-art, who was shot and killed on Friday night, in Bangkok, Thailand.
  • Thai anti-government protesters mourn in front of the picture of Yuthana Ong-art, who was shot and killed on Friday night, during a condolence ceremony in Bangkok, Thailand.
  • Thai anti-government protesters chat outside a makeshift camp where their colleagues were shot outside the prime minister's office of Government House in Bangkok, Thailand.
  • Thai anti-government protester washes his face at a protest site outside the Government House in Bangkok.

You May Like

Katrina Brought Enduring Changes to New Orleans

The city’s recovery is the result of the people and culture the city is famous for, as well as newcomers and start-up industries More

China to Open Stock Markets to Pension Funds

In unprecedented move, government to soon allow local pension funds to invest up to $94 billion in domestic shares More

Magical Photo Slides Show Native Americans in Late 1800s

Walter McClintock spent 20 years photographing the Blackfoot Indians and their vanishing culture at the dawn of the modern age More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs