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Charter Referendum
August 5, 2007

200,000 police, military to man booths
As Thailand gets ready to go to the polls again, a total of 187,950 police and army personnel are set to man 87,824 polling booths countrywide from Sunday through August 19, referendum day, when eligible voters will go to the booths to cast their votes regarding the draft constitution, a senior police officer said August 5.

Pol. Gen. Vichian Pojposri, acting deputy national police chief, said after presiding at the opening of a peace center for the draft charter that police and army personnel would also provide protection for transporting ballots and ballot boxes in cities and remote areas.

The number of police in the troubled southern provinces – Pattani, Yala and Narathiwat – will be tripled on August 19 to provide protection to election officials and people travelling to the polling booths, said Pol. Gen. Vichian.

Meanwhile, Minister attached to the Prime Minister's Office Thirapat Serirangsan said he still did not know whether the cabinet would declare August 20 a public holiday.

It would be positive if that day is declared a public holiday as it would be convenient for upcountry people now working in Bangkok to leave for home and exercise their voting rights, said Mr. Thirapat. TNA

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