Thailand’s government has set a deadline for opposition protesters to surrender women and children before it mounts a final assault on the Red Shirt encampments in central Bangkok.
Red Cross workers were told they would be given safe passage through a “live firing zone” until mid afternoon Monday to remove the vulnerable from the 3,000-strong crowd of demonstrators.
Two people were killed on Sunday as army snipers targeted activists behind burning tires and bamboo spiked barricades. At least 31 people have now been killed and hundreds wounded in three days of urban warfare in the Thai capital.
Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva, the Eton-educated leader, has struggled to quash mass protests by the opposition Red Shirts, who are loyal to Thaksin Shinawatra, the ex-premier who was ousted in a coup in 2006.