Thai army blocks anti-corruption protest, detains activists

BANGKOK: The Thai military has blocked an anti-corruption protest, detaining 33 students and other activists who were headed to a park honoring past kings that was allegedly built with money from shady dealings involving several senior officers.

The military's efforts to quash Monday's protest included detaching the railway car on which the protesters were traveling to Rajabhakti Park, near the seaside town of Hua Hin, before taking them into custody. Officials abruptly announced that the park, on army land, was closed for the day for renovations.

The case has become a major scandal in Thailand, largely because the military junta that has run the country since staging a coup last year had vowed to reform the country's political system to stamp out corruption, which it blames on politicians.