Embattled Thai Premier Yingluck Shinawatra on Wednesday asked anti-government protesters to unleash their angst at the ballot box as she insisted that elections were the best way to resolve the festering political crisis.
Yingluck tried to deflect the growing mass anger on the street by saying her government is ready to move forward with national reforms, a key demand of protesters whose massive protest campaign have wracked the country for months.
However, defiant protesters led by the opposition Democrat Party vowed to keep up their efforts to force the premier from office and install an unelected "people's council" to carry out reforms before the February 2 snap polls.
Early today, two persons were injured in a shooting incident, a bus was burnt and an opposition leader's house was damaged in a bomb explosion, as protesters brought parts of Bangkok to a near-standstill under their ongoing massive campaign that entered the third day today.
Yingluck, now caretaker prime minister, today held a meeting with about 37 parties to discuss the Election Commission (EC)'s suggestion to postpone the polls. She said the majority of participants insisted that the elections had to go ahead.
The premier insisted the elections were the best way to solve the country's escalating political crisis. "If people don't want this government they should go out and vote," she said.
Yingluck said the government and EC had no authority to postpone the polls.
Police said a garbage collector and a woman who were at an anti-government protester rally last night were slightly wounded in a shooting incident by an unidentified gunman.
The demonstrators, who sought to rein in the political dominance of the Shinawatra clan in the country, alleged that the Yingluck regime is controlled by her fugitive brother, Thaksin Shinawatra who was overthrown in a coup in 2006.
Thaksin lives in Dubai in a self-imposed exile to avoid a jail term on a corruption conviction.