July 3, 2011 |
As the head of Thailand's Securities and Exchange Commission, Thirachai Phuvanatnaranubala is one of the country's most powerful policy makers. But his true passion isn't GDP growth or inflation rates. He's co-author of an English-language book of prophecies called "Know Your Future," which uses the Thai zodiac to predict, among other things, an al Qaeda terrorist attack in 2014 and an Obama reelection victory in 2012. A major government figure dabbling in astrology would raise eyebrows in many countries (think former First Lady Nancy Reagan )
March 18, 2010 |
Protesters seeking to drive the ruling party from power doused the grounds of the Thai prime minister's residence with plastic bags of their own blood Wednesday as they continued their attempt to draw attention to their cause. At the same time, the number of red-shirted protesters camping out across Bangkok dropped by about half, to roughly 50,000, and the Thai stock market hit a two-year high when it became evident the disturbances had been contained. On Sunday, more than 100,000 demonstrators opposed to Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva had gathered in Bangkok and pledged to remain until he dissolved parliament and called new elections.
February 27, 2010 |
In a long-awaited decision, Thailand's Supreme Court ruled Friday that fugitive former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra had abused his power for personal gain and should be stripped of $1.4 billion of his frozen $2.3-billion fortune. The decision appeared designed to strike a balance between competing camps by leaving some of his fortune untouched, but it was unlikely to end the nation's four-year political crisis. A force of 500 riot police officers guarded the courthouse as the justices' decision was read out over 7 1/2 hours, but the expected demonstrations didn't materialize.
September 21, 2009 |
A bloody clash at an ancient Hindu temple on the Cambodian border. Security forces deployed in the capital to quell tens of thousands of anti-government protesters. A popular former prime minister calling his country a "dictatorship." And a beloved 81-year-old monarch hospitalized for the second time in four days. These are some of the scenes from a tumultuous weekend in Thailand, prompting Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva to call for peace and lament his nation's image in the world.
September 1, 2009 |
Thai police arrested two people accused of e-mailing a doctored recording of Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva ostensibly discussing ways to create chaos to use as a pretext to crack down on anti-government protesters. The two suspects work for SC Asset, a company controlled by the family of former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, Abhisit's political rival. Thaksin was deposed in a bloodless coup three years ago after being accused of corruption and abuse of power.
April 15, 2009 |
Leaders of demonstrations that plunged the Thai capital into chaos called off their protests Tuesday after rioting that left two dead and more than 120 injured across Bangkok. The swift and unexpected resolution ended with a final crowd of 2,000 die-hard protesters dutifully lining up for waiting government buses to take them home. Thailand Deputy Police Commissioner Watcharapol Prasarnrajkit said four of the protest leaders had surrendered and would be inter- rogated.