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Thaksin Wants Thai King to Intervene in Political Crisis

Thailand's fugitive former prime minister, Thaksin Shinawatra, has repeated his appeal for the country's king to intervene in the political crisis.

The ousted former Thai leader told reporters in Dubai Thursday that he "humbly" urges the country's widely respected King Bhumibol Adulyadej to help resolve the crisis. Mr. Thaksin has accused the king's top advisers of being behind a 2006 coup that toppled him from power.

Thailand's cabinet will hold a special meeting on Friday to discuss recent political unrest and economic matters. The meeting will take place at an undisclosed location due to security concerns.

Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva said Thursday that he plans to hold a joint session of parliament next week to find a solution to the crisis.

Mr. Abhisit returned to his office on Thursday for first time since pro-Thaksin demonstrators began blockading it three weeks ago.

In an interview with Bloomberg Television, Prime Minister Abhisit said he is seeking an agreement on political reforms. Mr. Abhisit said he will call for elections when Thailand regains stability and he is sure there is no threat of violence.

Earlier this week, two people were killed and more than 100 wounded in clashes between security forces and anti-government demonstrators in Bangkok.

Thailand imposed a state of emergency after pro-Thaksin protesters forced the cancellation of an Asian summit in the coastal resort of Pattaya last week.

Mr. Thaksin fled a two-year prison sentence on corruption charges and is also wanted in connection with recent street protests.

Thailand earlier this week issued arrest warrants for Mr. Thaksin and 36 opposition leaders on charges of illegal assembly and inciting criminal acts.

Thai authorities also revoked Mr. Thaksin's passport for inciting his supporters to disrupt last week's summit. But Nicaragua announced Wednesday it has granted the ousted Thai leader a diplomatic passport. Managua says Mr. Thaksin has been named a "special ambassador" to attract investment for the Central American nation.

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