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Workers prepare lighting and sound stands for a rally by pro-government ‘red shirt’ supporters in Nakorn Pathorn province, west of Bangkok, on April 4, 2014. Hundreds of thousands of Thai government supporters are expected to descend on Bangkok this weekend in a symbolic show of force after months of sometimes violent protests aimed at bringing down Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra.
Workers prepare lighting and sound stands for a rally by pro-government ‘red shirt’ supporters in Nakorn Pathorn province, west of Bangkok, on April 4, 2014. Hundreds of thousands of Thai government supporters are expected to descend on Bangkok this weekend in a symbolic show of force after months of sometimes violent protests aimed at bringing down Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra.
(DARREN WHITESIDE/REUTERS)

NATHAN VANDERKLIPPE

The thin veneer of Thai democracy on verge of ripping apart

The prime minister is perhaps weeks away from being deposed. Huge numbers of people are preparing to descend on the capital in competing protests this Saturday. The army is preparing to mobilize large numbers of troops.

Thailand has been simmering for months. But the country is now closer to an eruption of violence than at any other time since the protests of 2010, when some 91 people died, some of them shot in a temple by government troops.