Thai PM Warns “Red Shirts” of “Losses”

Thailand Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva has issued a stern warning to anti-government protesters who continue to occupy Bangkok’s business district, saying that the government will do what needs to be done even if it risks clashes.

In a televised address, Abhisit said that “from now on, what the government will do may risk clashes and losses, but the government knows what it’s doing.” The prime minister’s pronouncement reinforces the statement made by Army spokesman Sansern Kaewkamnerd, who said that police have been ordered to use force if necessary in driving the “red shirts” out of the Silom business district.

However, the protesters vowed to continue occupying the business district, which has been closed for about a month now. Protest leader Nattawut Saikua said that the “red shirts” are “prepared” for whatever action Abhisit takes.

People allied with the government have been calling on Abhisit to impose martial law to give the military more freedom to do what is necessary to end the stand off that has already cost Thailand millions in potential revenue. However, the prime minister appears not keen on using martial law to end the crisis, saying that “this instrument is not needed.”