Dozens trapped in Bangkok televison station blaze

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Bangkok (Thailand), May 19 (ANI): Protesters have set fire to the offices of a TV station in Bangkok, trapping 100 people inside, officials say.

According to Sky News, other parts of the city have also been set ablaze, with fires burning at the Stock Exchange, several banks, the headquarters of the Metropolitan Electricity Authority, the upmarket Central World shopping mall and a cinema complex that has collapsed.

Military officials say they have sent a helicopter to begin an airlift of staff from the Channel 3 station.

The arson attacks came in the wake of a deadly operation by the Thai army to break up the long-running anti-government protest, leaving five people dead, including an Italian journalist.

The government says a city wide curfew will be imposed on Wednesday night until 6am Bangkok time.

The army used armoured vehicles to punch into the protesters' fortified camp, smashing through tyres, bamboo stakes and razor wire.

Gunfire rattled around the city's overpasses during several hours of street battles.

"It's not over - the movement is not centrally led, it's a genuine grass roots movement," said one journalist monitoring the developments. (ANI)

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