Thai protest leader meets PM, refuses to back down
BANGKOK, Thailand – The leader of mass opposition protests in Thailand said Sunday, December 1, he had held crisis talks with Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, but vowed to continue his fight to topple the government.
"I told Yingluck that this is the only and last time I see her until power is handed over to the people," Suthep Thaugsuban said in a televised speech.
"I told her the only solution is to hand over power to the people. There will be no bargaining and it must be finished in 2 days."
The meeting, which was held in secret in the presence of the army, navy and air force commanders, followed an eruption of violence in the Thai capital.
Police fired tear gas and water cannon at protesters trying to storm the government headquarters Sunday.
The street rallies, aimed at replacing Yingluck's government with an unelected "people's council", are the biggest since mass pro-Thaksin protests in Bangkok 3 years ago left dozens dead in a military crackdown.
"We will not be satisfied with house dissolution or new elections," Suthep said.
He said Yingluck did not give an answer to the demands.
Violence broke out late Saturday in the area around a suburban stadium where tens of thousands of pro-government "Red Shirts" had gathered in support of Yingluck, who has faced weeks of street protests.
Four people were killed and 57 wounded, according to Bangkok's Erawan emergency center, although the circumstances were unclear. – Rappler.com