The yellow-shirted protest movement that brought down two Thai governments voted to become a formal political party yesterday, adding a new force to the country's already volatile political system. The People's Alliance for Democracy, which draws support from the country's middle class and is opposed to exiled PM Thaksin Shinawatra, will contest elections next year, reports the Wall Street Journal.
The transformation of the PAD from protest group to political party gives a further boost to Sondhi Limthongkul, the movement's leader. He recently survived an assassination attempt when gunmen peppered his car with dozens of bullets. Abhisit Vejjajiva, the prime minister who came to power in the wake of the PAD protests, said yesterday he was unconcerned by the developments—even though the movement and his own party have the same supporters.