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Early voting of Thai general election begins
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13:52, December 15, 2007

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Thai voters across the country went to their polling stations and cast advance ballots on Saturday morning, starting the early voting for the Dec. 23 general election.

The Election Commission (EC) said more than 2 million people who had applied to cast advance votes on Saturday and Sunday, both within and outside their constituencies.

In case ballots for advance voting are insufficient, ballots for Dec. 23 will be used.

In Bangkok, a 903,899 eligible voters have registered to exercise their right to cast advance ballots as the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) has ordered all of its 50 district offices to prepare enough space and facilities for the voters.

It is predicted that 20 percent of total eligible voters in the Thai capital would cast advance ballots.

Gen. Sonthi Boonyaratkalin, deputy prime minister and last year's military coup leader, has already cast his vote in central province of Lopburi on Saturday morning, said the FM 100 Traffic Radio said.

During the weekends, police and army officials will provide extra nationwide security, especially in the three southern provinces of Pattani, Yala and Narathiwat affected by ongoing violence.

Source: Xinhua

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