Thai ‘Red Shirts’ Storm Parliament

Anti-government protesters entered Thailand’s Parliament building on Wednesday, forcing administration lawmakers to be evacuated by a Black Hawk helicopter. The “Red Shirts” break into the gated Parliament building by crashing a truck into the barricade. The protesters then proceeded to the second floor of the main building.

Reports said some lawmakers allied with Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva climbed walls to avoid being confronted by the protesters, who have vowed not to leave the capital Bangkok unless the Parliament is dissolved and new elections are called.

The protesters, known officially as the United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship, virtually have the capital under hostage, forcing several establishments to close down. Earlier this week, protesters briefly clashed with police after the “Red Shirts” were prevented from moving out of their camp.

The attack on Parliament, however, is considered the biggest victory for the mostly poor protesters, who only retreated after opposition lawmakers requested them to withdraw. Political analysts believe that Prime Minister Abhisit may be starting to lose the support of the police and military after the protesters were able to move in despite the presence of thousands of security forces.