Tensions rose as anti-government rallies to ‘shutdown’ Bangkok began on Monday, with many major intersections around Thailand’s capital blocked by protestors
Thousands of anti-government protesters, some wearing T-shirts with the slogan "Bangkok Shutdown", on Monday amassed at strategic locations across Bangkok with the aim of disrupting the upcoming February 2 elections.
The flag-waving demonstrators, who began gathering over the weekend, have vowed to stop officials going to work and cut off power to key state offices as part of the shutdown efforts.
Several shots were fired at the headquarters of the opposition Democrat Party in a drive-by shooting in the early hours Monday but nobody was hurt.
Local media reported that most people appeared to have opted to leave their cars at home and traffic was light in the city centre. The Bangkok metro and skytrain were running and many people were seen going to work as usual.
The shutdown however has sparked panic buying among some residents, and the US embassy has advised stockpiling a two weeks' supply of food, water and medicine.
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