In Thailand, a peaceful movement becomes unhinged
Thailand has a long history of political unrest and protests. Here's a look at the relationship between pro- and anti-government demonstrators over the last four years and how that relationship unraveled into the the current instability. More coverage »
Tens of thousands of protesters demand Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra’s resignation despite his move to dissolve parliament and call snap elections.
A bloodless coup
Military leaders stage a coup to depose Prime Minister Shinawatra while he is attending the opening of the U.N. General Assembly.
A new constitution
First draft of a new constitution is approved by a committee appointed by the military administration. A month later, Thai Rak Thai party is banned.
Thais vote in their first general elections since the coup the year before.
A new government
Parliament convenes for the first time since the military seized power. Samak Sundaravej becomes prime minister.
State of emergency is declared after pro- and anti-government demonstrators clash. Samak is dismissed after a week of anti-government protests. Somchai Wongsawat becomes prime minister.
Anti-government activists blockade airport terminal buildings.
Yet another prime minister
Somchai is forced from office. Thailand gets its third prime minister in four months after former opposition leader Abhisit Vejjajiva is voted into power.
Summit cancelled, state of emergency declared
Protesters force the cancellation of a summit of Asian leaders after storming the venue in the resort of Pattaya. Abhisit announces a state of emergency in Bangkok and surrounding areas as civil unrest spreads, with clashes between anti-government demonstrators and security forces.
Protesters demand new elections
Supporters of former prime minister Thaksin rally in Bangkok to demand new elections.
Thailand descends into chaos
Thaksin supporters gather to demand early elections to replace the government. The protests become increasingly unruly. The government orders army forces to storm the protesters’ barricades and end the demonstrations.