Red March in Bangkok, Day 1 / Thaksin: "I'll travel to Europe tomorrow!"

Today marked the start of the protest weekend by the anti-government red shirts in Bangkok and according to reports, blogs and twitteres on the scene it has been, compared to the hype and the fear-mongering prior to this day, rather quiet on the streets. Even though many places of the capital were less busy than usual (even the big, always crowded MBK mall was nearly empty), no bigger inconvenience or unrest was reported and the turnout was just shy of a few hundreds at each rally point in the city, according to what The Nation's Tulsathit Taptim tweeted. Apart from an incident in Pathum Thani, it has been peaceful. So far this is not too surprising as the red shirts just started gathering in their respective provinces and then head to Bangkok. This shifts the focus on the next two days, when they are expected to arrive. ------------------------

Late afternoon reports came in that former PM Thaksin Shinawatra has left, or even expelled, from his exile in Dubai, UAE and was on his way to Siem Reap, Cambodia - which the Foreign Ministry has confirmed! But then during the night Thaksin wrote this on his Twitter feed...

มีข่าวว่าผมถูกขับออกจากUAEไปอยู่ที่เสียมเรียบ ขอโทษทีไม่จริงนะครับผมยังอยู่ท่ีดูไบพรุ่งนี้จะเดินทางไปยุโรปพบกับลูกสาวทั้งสองคนซึ่งดูงานเสร็จ

There have been news that I was asked to leave UAE and flew to Siam Reap. I'm sorry to say that it's not true. I'm still in Dubai and tomorrow I will head to Europe to visit my two daughters, who just went to a trade show.

Thaksin Shinawatra on Twitter (@ThaksinLive), March 13, 2010 - Translation and emphasis by me

Thaksin's daughters are reported to be in Germany right now, where they'll visit "an exhibition and trade fair hotels in Germany". Currently, the International Travel Trade Show in Berlin is underway.

But, is it very likely that Thaksin will travel to Europe and being permitted access to Germany, again?

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