September 1, 2008 / 7:47 PM / 11 years ago

35 hurt in Thai clashes near occupied PM's office

An anti-government protester holds a baseball bat in preparation for clashes, outside the Government House in Bangkok September 1, 2008. REUTERS/Adrees Latif

BANGKOK (Reuters) - At least 35 people were hurt in clashes on Tuesday between supporters of Thai Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej and anti-government protesters in Bangkok, a Health Ministry official said.

The official could not confirm television reports that one person had been killed in the skirmishes near Government House, occupied since last week by protesters demanding Samak’s resignation.

The pro-government crowd broke through several lines of riot police to confront members of the People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) near the prime minister’s official compound.

The two sides threw stones and wooden planks at one another before additional riot police moved in to separate them.

Live TV coverage showed one man lying on the ground with a small pool of blood next to his head.

Government supporters said shots were fired during the skirmish, but it was not clear by whom. A Reuters reporter at the scene saw two bullet casings lying on the pavement.

Reporting by Nopporn Wong-Anan and Ed Cropley, writing by Darren Schuettler; Editing by Catherine Evans

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