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Page last updated at 05:53 GMT, Tuesday, 25 November 2008

Thailand protesters extend action

By Jonathan Head
BBC News, Bangkok

Yellow-clad protesters enter Bangkok's old airport building, 25 Nov 2008.
Anti-government protesters appear to be losing steam.

Anti-government protests have entered a second day in the Thai capital Bangkok.

The opposition People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD) has sent thousands of people to the temporary cabinet offices based at the old international airport.

A strike announced by public sector workers in sympathy with the PAD appears to be causing little disruption with few workers joining the strike.

Organisers say the protest is a "final battle" to fell the government, but may be losing steam.

The mass sit-in by protesters at the prime minister's office in Bangkok has now turned into a rowdy caravan, as the People's Alliance for Democracy fans out across the city in search of targets.

But targets are proving frustratingly elusive.

On Monday MPs abandoned parliament, and the police simply stood aside and allowed the PAD to besiege an empty building.

The caravan has since moved north, to the old airport, which is being used by the cabinet as its own offices are still under PAD occupation.

But there were no cabinet ministers in evidence.

Losing steam?

The government appears to have decided to let the PAD move freely wherever it pleases, and avoid the kind of confrontation with police, which caused so many injuries last month.

The tactic seems to be working.

The PAD has called this week's protests their final showdown to oust the government - but the numbers are smaller than they predicted, and the government shows no signs of buckling.

Without any dramatic clashes, the chances of a military coup - always slim - are non-existent. After six months of almost continuous demonstrations, the yellow-shirted movement that has all but paralyzed the government, may be running out of steam.

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