UN Renews Call for Restraint in Thailand's Deadly Demonstrations

New York, May 18 (DPA) UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon Monday repeated his call for both sides in Thailand's deadly street demonstrations to show restraint as the toll rose to at least 36.

UN spokesman Martin Nesirky said UN mediation is possible only if the Thai government and the demonstrators both agree to seek it, which has not occurred, he said.

Thai demonstrators last week apparently called for UN mediation, which the government in Bangkok rejected.

The UN said that Ban has been in touch with Thai authorities regarding the situation, and he expressed concern about the ongoing crisis and urged restraint, stressing the need for a peaceful resolution through dialogue.

"Regarding UN mediation, the UN always stands ready to help, however, both sides must be in agreement to the UN's involvement," a UN official said.

Ban said last week that he was concerned by the mounting violence as anti-government Red Shirt demonstrators battled armed troops.

On Monday, demonstrators ignored a deadline to disperse from a central Bangkok protest site following the confirmed death of renegade army Major General Khattiya Sawasdipol, 58, who was shot by a sniper last week.

The death toll in the four days of street battles stood at 36, including journalists.


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Title: UN Renews Call for Restraint in Thailand's Deadly Demonstrations

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