Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Mumbai Under Attack

11:00 PM

BANGKOK, Thailand (AP) — Thai authorities shut down Bangkok's second airport Thursday after it was overrun by anti-government protesters, completely cutting off the capital from air traffic as the prime minister rejected their demands to resign, deepening the country's crisis.

Thailand's powerful army commander, who has remained neutral in the conflict, stepped into the fray Wednesday, urging Prime Minister Somchai Wongsawat to step down.

He also asked thousands of protesters to end their siege of the main international Suwarnabhumi airport since Tuesday night, which has forced authorities to shut down the facility and cancel hundreds of flights, drawing world attention to a turmoil that has reduced Thailand to a dysfunctional nation.

10:00 PM

(AP) – Teams of gunmen stormed luxury hotels, a popular restaurant, hospitals and a crowded train station in coordinated attacks across India’s financial capital Wednesday night, killing at least 82 people and taking Westerners hostage, police said. A group of suspected Muslim militants claimed responsibility.

Parts of the city remained under siege as dawn approached Thursday, with police and gunmen exchanging occasional gunfire at two hotels and an unknown number of people still held hostage, said A.N. Roy, a top police official. Soldiers also took up positions across the city.

A raging fire and explosions struck the landmark Taj Mahal hotel shortly after midnight. Screams could be heard and black smoke billowed from the century-old edifice on Mumbai’s waterfront. Firefighters sprayed water at the blaze and plucked people from windows and balconies with extension ladders.

The Étudiant will keep you updated.

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