Thai Parliament postpones session

Thailand's Parliament on Monday postponed a joint session as thousands of anti-government protesters surrounded the building in a bid to unseat the administration, reported CNN.

Thousands of protesters march to Parliament in Bangkok on Monday.

Samart Kaewmeechai, the deputy house speaker, said the Monday meeting was canceled because members of Parliament could not access the building.

Thousands of protesters from the People's Alliance for Democracy marched to Parliament at sunrise in a rally billed as their final bid to oust the government. Protesters have been camped at the prime minister's office compound for three months.

The parliamentary session was not immediately rescheduled.

The demonstrators were flanked by their own guards, who were armed with poles, clubs and metal rods. Many protesters carried masks and swimming goggles to protect against tear gas, which police have said they would use to maintain order.

The demonstrators initially called the protest to block Parliament from debating a bill to rewrite the constitution. That contentious issue was dropped at the last minute and lawmakers will instead debate legislation related to an upcoming regional summit.

Protesters have occupied the grounds of the prime minister's office for three months in their effort to topple the government, which they allege is the puppet of former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra.

They accuse Thaksin, who was ousted by a 2006 military coup, of corruption and abuse of power, and claim the constitution bill before the legislature would help him stage a comeback.

Thaksin is in exile, a fugitive from a two-year jail term imposed after he was convicted last month of violating a conflict of interest law.

"I'm very scared. But it is time that we win this," said a protester, Wimon Sricarak. "We have been attacked, our friends have died, and all because they want to protect Thaksin."

Two small blasts went off before dawn Monday near the offices of a key protest leader, said police Sgt. Theerapong Rakjit. Nobody was injured and the origin of the blast was not immediately known.

The last time the group marched on Parliament, police efforts to disperse them resulted in running street battles. Two people were killed in the Oct. 7 violence and hundreds injured.

The fracas also disturbed animals at Dusit Zoo across the road, and zookeepers were forced to comfort highly strung animals such as kangaroos.

On Sunday, kangaroos, wallabies and elephants were taken by their handlers to the far side of the zoo, where they would be more protected from any mayhem. Dusit Zoo director Kanchanachai Saenwong said that despite the confrontations in the area, there were no plans to relocate the zoo.

The Education Ministry ordered four public schools in the area closed.

Police said 2,400 policemen would be stationed outside Parliament, which is about half a mile from the prime minister's compound. "Police and soldiers will not be armed with lethal weapons, only shields and batons," government spokesman Nattawut Sai-gua told The Associated Press.

The protest alliance also says it is committed to nonviolence, though forays outside its stronghold are usually led by tough young men, who carry homemade weapons such as iron rods -- and in some cases handguns -- and who have won a reputation for aggressive behavior.

The alliance accused police of being behind an attack last week in which grenades killed two protesters during demonstrations at and near the occupied Government House. Authorities have denied the charge.

Protest leaders were calling for Sunday's rally to be their biggest ever, but the number that turned out appeared to be at most just one-quarter to one-third the 100,000 supporters protest spokesman Parnthep Wongpuapan said had been expected.

"It will be D-Day. This will be our final push to bring down the government," 64-year-old protester Chokchuang Chutinaton said.

The alliance's supporters are largely middle-class citizens, who say Thailand's electoral system is susceptible to vote-buying and argues the rural majority -- the Thaksin camp's power base -- is not sophisticated enough to cast ballots responsibly.

They propose replacing an elected Parliament with one that is mostly appointed, a move critics charge is meant to keep power in the hands of the educated, urban elite. 

U.S. regrets EU move on tariffs, seeks deal on Boeing-Airbus row
U.S. regrets EU move on tariffs, seeks deal on Boeing-Airbus row
FBI probes fire set in Boston ballot drop box
FBI probes fire set in Boston ballot drop box
U.S. Vice President Pence's chief of staff tests positive for COVID-19
U.S. Vice President Pence's chief of staff tests positive for COVID-19
Loading Bars
Latest
Germany reports 8,685 new COVID-19 cases
Footage from liberated from occupation Gubadli city (VIDEO)
Footage from liberated from occupation Khanligr village of Gubadli region (VIDEO)
Armenia does not want to take bodies of its deceased soldiers as it fears anger of people - Assistant to the President of Azerbaijan
Kazakh PM meets with Turkish Defense Minister
Footage from liberated from occupation Padar village of Gubadli region (VIDEO)
Azerbaijan neutralizes one of 3 missiles shot by Armenian troops at Azerbaijan's Tartar
Azerbaijan's Bank Association denies lies spread by Armenian side
Effective co-op in field of border security established between Azerbaijan, Iran
Armenian Armed Forces shell Azerbaijan’s Tartar by using 'Smerch' missiles
Armenia indiscriminately targets civilians - Assistant to Azerbaijani president
Azerbaijanis hold rally in California, condemning Armenian terror (PHOTO)
Azerbaijani compatriots living in Minnesota hold protest rally (PHOTO)
Armenian Armed Forces shelling Azerbaijan's Tartar city, villages
Armenian armed forces shelling Tartar city with artillery, missiles in gross breach of humanitarian ceasefire
Iran's powder detergent production grows
Azerbaijanis in Denmark hold protest rally against Armenian terror (PHOTO)
Turkish embassy in Georgia talks joint energy projects of Georgia, Azerbaijan, Turkey
Protest rally against Armenian attack on Ganja held in Bielefeld, Germany (PHOTO)
Iranian Energy Exchange announces products to be on sale October 27
Armenian Armed Forces’ quadrocopter destroyed by Azerbaijani troops
Al Jazeera posts article covering aftermath of Armenian missile attack on Ganja
Baku's secondary housing prices show monthly decline
Investments in Iran's capital market increase
Uzbek Reconstruction and Development Fund to support creation of Export Support Fund
Turkey's export of defense products to Morocco plunges
Nagorno-Karabakh region to be liberated sooner or later: press secretary of Turkish president
USD falls against Uzbek soum for the first time in three months
Work connected with laying of gas pipelines on freed Azerbaijani territories kicked off (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Volume of maritime cargo shipment via Turkey from Spain disclosed
Turkmenistan significantly increases import of wheat flour from EAEU countries
Azerbaijani railway operator admitted to consortium of Trans-Caspian Transport Route
Georgia reveals results of 18 foreign exchange auctions conducted by National Bank
Iran Khodro reveals amount of funds saved thanks to domestic manufacturing
Export of Turkish-made defense products to China slumps
Armenian Armed Forces fire at school in Aghdam (PHOTO)
Assistant to Azerbaijani president comments on photo of Armenia's defense minister together with Armenian soldiers
Macron's anti-Islamic statements point to extreme misunderstanding of religion - Arab analyst
Uzbekistan’s Kashkadarya tops list of regions implementing foreign investments
Heritage Foundation's Foreign Policy Studies Center Director comments on photo showing Russian field camp set up near Armenian Tegh
Georgia sees increase in hazelnuts export
Georgia reveals volume of exported apples
U.S. regrets EU move on tariffs, seeks deal on Boeing-Airbus row
Russia seeking to be stabilizer in South Caucasus, says Russian expert
Uzbekistan discusses strengthening multilateral co-op with China and S. Korea
President Aliyev congratulates commanders of joint military corps who distinguished themselves in liberation of Gubadli city, villages of Gubadli district from occupiers
Review of statistics of people registered within state program 'Remotely from Georgia'
Volume of trade turnover between Turkmenistan, Russia’s Perm Krai revealed
Azerbaijani army does not fire at civilians - Defense Ministry
President Ilham Aliyev interviewed by Italian Rai 1 TV channel (PHOTO)
Iran launches new water treatment facility in Tehran
Iran studies Famotidine as Coronavirus treatment
Industrial production in Karabakh to increase in post-conflict period - CAERC head
Turkish president urges to boycott French goods
Work on power supply to strategic facilities in freed Azerbaijani territories underway (PHOTO)
Bank of Georgia suffers loss
S&P Global Ratings expects Azerbaijan's export to grow in next years
Iran’s Bahar Azadi gold coin price falling
Wildfire breaks out in Azerbaijan's Dashkasan district from Armenian attacks (VIDEO)
SOCAR considering new investments in Turkey
Romania's import of Azerbaijani products for 9M2020 revealed
Armenian Armed Forces fire at Azerbaijan’s Tartar district
Price of most Georgian companies’ shares up on London Stock Exchange
UK armed forces take control of ship in English Channel, seven people detained
Mobile phones and smartphones import down in Georgia
Azerbaijan confirms 131 more COVID-19 recoveries
Iran enlarges petrochemicals production
Azerbaijan hikes export to Belarus in 9M2020
S&P says Azerbaijani manat to maintain position against USD
German government raises 2020 GDP forecast to -5.5%
Turkmenistan ready to support contracts with companies of Russia’s Perm Krai
Recruiting children by Armenia against Azerbaijan is war crime, says Lebanese lawyer
President Ilham Aliyev: Azerbaijan restoring historical justice on battlefield
Azerbaijan's Aghjabadi district again under fire of Armenian Armed Forces
It is not worth using peacekeeping efforts of third states in settlement of Karabakh conflict - Georgian expert
Weekly digest of Azerbaijan’s energy sector
Uzbekneftegaz accelerates commissioning of technological devices due to autumn-winter period
EU's Barnier heads for London for Brexit deal talks
Corn oil produced by Georgian Plant Oil Company Qarva to enter supermarkets
President Ilham Aliyev talks proving to world that Karabakh is Azerbaijan's historical land
Turkey discloses 9M2020 data on cargo movement via its ports from UK
Armenia's leadership, criminal junta regime have no moral, ethical framework - Azerbaijani top official
Iran ready to fire at Armenian Armed Forces if they approach its border with Azerbaijan
Iran`s Quchan grapes exports revealed
Turkmen private sector provides half of industrial production in Balkan region
Amount of industrial enterprises launched in Iran's Hamadan soars
Iran reveals its COVID-19 data for October 26
Uzbekneftegaz eyes to increase natural gas production
Armenia never supports peace – Azerbaijani MP in interview to TRT World TV channel (VIDEO)
Karabakh conflict's settlement process is at hot point - Kremlin spokesman
Over 230 tankers with ACG oil shipped from Ceyhan terminal
Azerbaijani Prosecutor General's Office gives updates on civil casualties, damages
Iran's Shazand Oil Refining Company opens tender to buy equipment
Secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council slams French president
Canada points out importance of creating mechanism for resolving Nagorno-Karabakh conflict
EBRD supports construction of 100 MW wind farm in south of Kazakhstan
Georgian Tegeta Motors Company makes another deals
All nations in Azerbaijan united and will achieve victory - head of Russian community
Iran boosts generation capacity of thermal power plants
Kazakhstan's fixed investments volume decreases over 9M2020
All news