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Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra to dissolve parliament and call elections

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra has said she will dissolve the lower house of Parliament and call elections in an attempt to calm the country’s deepening political crisis.

Yingluck’s announcement came as thousands of anti-government protesters began marching through Bangkok in a “final showdown” against her government.

“After listening to opinions from all sides, I have decided to request a royal decree to dissolve Parliament,” Yingluck said in a televised statement. “There will be new elections according to the democratic system.”

She did not immediately set a date and it was unclear whether the move would ease the country’s political standoff, which deepened Sunday after the main opposition party resigned from the legislature en masse.

Opposition leader Abhisit Vejjajiva said the dissolution of parliament was “the first step” towards solving Thailand’s political crisis.

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