Clean-up starts at Thai airports

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The Independent Online

Hundreds of Thai soldiers looked for bombs and weapons as cleaning crews mopped and buffed the floors, part of an around-the-clock effort to reopen Thailand's international airport after a week-long closure that stranded 300,000 tourists.

Outside the main departure terminal at Suvarnabhumi airport yesterday, the last anti-government protesters rolled their sleeping mats, took down their tents in front of the ticket counters and abandoned the noodle stands. Vudhibhandhu Vichairatana, the chairman of the Airports of Thailand, said an initial inspection found no damage. He said they were still checking the computer, communication and security systems but expected everything would be operational within days. The protest leader, Chamlong Srimuang, left, shook hands with airport officials and Mr Chamlong bowed toward a Buddhist shrine with a portrait of the country's revered constitutional monarch, King Bhumibol Adulyadej. It was a surreal end to the crisis that started on 25 November when protesters from the People's Alliance for Democracy stormed Suvarnabhumi and later the domestic Don Muang airport. AP