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    Thai protestors defy Government order


    by ODN


    Thailand is braced for a potentially bloody crackdown on anti-government protesters after a deadline passed for demonstrators to leave their sprawling encampment in downtown Bangkok.

    Protesters defied the eviction order and only a trickle of an estimated 5,000 people, many of them women and children, at the site in the commercial heart of the city had left, heightening fears that violence will intensify.

    Responding to the Red Shirts' call for negotiations, the government said on Monday it would consider dialogue if they halted their attacks and dispersed. Neither looked likely as clashes and standoffs continued in several locations.

    Earlier, protestors held a minute's silence following the death of renegade Thai soldier Major General Khattiya Sawasdiphol.

    Known as the 'Red General' Sawisdiphol was shot five days ago, an incident which lead to further violent clashes on the capital's streets.