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Thai Protesters Continue to Occupy Government Compound

Thousands of protesters in Thailand are still occupying the government's main compound in Bangkok Thursday, despite a court order to leave.

A civil court issued a ruling Wednesday at the government's request for the protesters to leave the compound and the surrounding area immediately.

But it appears police have taken no action to enforce the order.

Thousands of activists have occupied the compound since Tuesday, saying they will not end their protest until Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej resigns.

On Wednesday, a criminal court in Bangkok issued arrest warrants for nine protest leaders. No arrests have been reported yet. Court officials said the nine are facing charges of inciting unrest and trying to overthrow the government.

Some of the arrest warrants are for leaders of the People's Alliance for Democracy, which has been the main organizing force behind the rally.

An estimated 30,000 people Wednesday surrounded the Government House compound, which includes the prime minister's office. Several thousand entered the grounds of the compound, prompting a brief clash with police.

Prime Minister Samak, whose seven months in office have been punctuated by anti-government protests, says he will not step down. He says the protesters want to prompt a military coup like the one that unseated his predecessor, Thaksin Shinawatra, in 2006.

The protesters say Mr. Samak is too close to Mr. Thaksin, who is accused of corruption and has fled to Britain.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.