Bangkok Coup blogging

“The Thai military have taken control of the city and a state of emergency has been declared in Bangkok.”

– security bulletin received
I’m safe right now, trying to monitor the news, however, the news just got blacked out. On the Thai news TV stations, a short recorded video was just announcement. The loose translation is as follows (thanks to Art):

“The reason why we are doing this is because we want peace back in town. We do not want to replace the current government, but we will give democracy back to the people as soon as possible. However, the rest of the courts have not been removed. No troops will move unless commanded by us. The constitution and the constitutional court has been cancelled. Ministers have been removed from posts. Senators representatives have been annulled.”

-Lieutenant General Sonthi Boonyaratglin (Art’s translation)
Additional information about the announcement is also on the BBC website here.
I first received a call from Art when I was at the guy’s group around, and another one from a colleague alerting me to head home ASAP.
Initial reports were being filed on TV (CNN and BBC World), however, they’ve since been blanked. The internet seems to be holding up, as I’ve called my dad and IM’d with several friends and colleagues. It’s quite amazing that news spread very quickly. When I was leaving work, my friend told me about some rumors of a demonstration around UN ESCAP. (Note: the UN Bangkok office is next to the Army HQ and is near the Government House.)
Two friends of mine (Jon and Lyd) just had the luck to arrive in Thailand today. I ended up waking them up at their hotel room with news of the coup. So far, we’ve been told to stay at home, until the situation is further assessed.
More news to follow as things develop, if the infrastructure (international internet) holds up.

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