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Scuffle mars rally outside PM's residence

ANTI-GOVERNMENT protesters, led by Anchalee Paireerak and Seri Wongmontha - core members of the People's Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) - marched from the Rajdamnoen rally site yesterday to the residence of caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, where they called for her resignation.

Only women and transsexuals - many of them members of the Miss Tiffany's dance troupe - joined the protest, dubbed the "flower protest", outside Yingluck's residence.

Addressing the protesters, Anchalee said Yingluck was not at home, but that their rally was a symbolic show of support against her government. She then called for Yingluck to resign her post as caretaker prime minister.

A large number of police were deployed to block Soi Yothin Pattana 3. However, protesters were able to circumvent the lines of police trucks and move into the street. The first group of protesters reached Yingluck's residence at about 11.30am and were joined by Anchalee and Seri in the main protest group at 1.45pm.

After calling for Yingluck's resignation, protesters placed wreaths outside Yingluck's residence, before starting the return trip at 3.30pm to the Rajdamnoen rally site.

During the protest, no scuffles with police were reported. However, BlueSky Channel - a pro-Democrat channel - claimed a policeman had struck a woman sitting in her car in the parking area outside Yingkluck's residence. The alleged assault promptly led the PDRC's core leaders to ask protesters to leave the area.

Meanwhile, Yingluck, who was in the process of boarding a train from Udon Thani to Nong Khai when protesters arrived at her house yesterday, said she was not worried by the rally outside her residence, as she was able to monitor the protests via her iPad. Yingluck asked the media to tell protesters "the owner is not at home".

Deputy Prime Minister Pracha Promnog said police had allowed protesters to gather outside Yingluck's house because they believed the protests to be peaceful.


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