A grenade attack on anti-government protesters occupying the Thai prime minister's office wounds eight people.
Grenade wounds eight Thai protestors
A grenade attack on anti-government protesters occupying the Thai prime minister's office wounded eight people early today, officials said. Police Lt Col Samreng Songsiang said he inspected the scene and the explosion was from an M-79 grenade, normally fired from launchers. The protesters have occupied the government house compound since August, and say they will not leave until Thai prime minister Somchai Wongsawat resigns or is overthrown.
The protest movement has been the focus of several small bomb and grenade attacks, including one on Thursday that killed one person and wounded more than 20. Today's explosion occurred shortly after 2am outside the government house compound where guards appointed by the protesters man checkpoints. No one took responsibility for the blast. Mr Songsiang said the grenade was fired from somewhere nearby but could not pinpoint the location or suggest who would have fired it.
One of the key protest leaders, Chamlong Srimuang, said the grenade was launched from the headquarters of the Bangkok metropolitan police about 150 metres away. "The grenade was fired from the (police) headquarters. This proves the attackers were government security forces or bad guys who are supported by the government," Mr Srimuang said from the stage at the protest site where about 2,000 people had gathered.
The latest attack came one day before the protest group that calls itself the People's Alliance for Democracy plans a mass demonstration at government house. Mr Srimuang said it will start late today and continue into tomorrow and is meant to "finish off" the government. Speaking to the crowd, he said the protesters will march from government house, but did not name the destination - although most expect it will be Parliament, where the government plans to meet tomorrow morning.